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St. Tammany News

Mom charged with raping her son, 7
Boy's graffiti a "cry for help'

03/23/02

By Paul Rioux
St. Tammany bureau/The Times-Picayune

A 27-year-old Slidell area woman was booked Thursday with repeatedly raping her 7-year-old son after someone saw a reference to the assaults in graffiti the boy had scrawled on a wall in their home, authorities said.

The woman, whose name is being withheld to protect the boy's identity, was booked with aggravated rape. She is accused of sexually assaulting her son numerous times last year from January to September, sheriff's deputies said.

An unidentified person notified authorities in December after reading a chilling message the boy wrote on a wall in their home about having sex with his mother, St. Tammany Parish Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Tiffany Tate said.

The boy and his younger brother, whom authorities don't believe was assaulted, were placed in foster care during the ensuing three-month investigation. Experts in sexual abuse at the Children's Advocacy Center in Covington interviewed the boy and concluded he had been raped repeatedly by his mother, Tate said.

The woman has a history of drug problems and was arrested Thursday at a Slidell rehabilitation center where she had moved after her children were taken away, Tate said.

Tate said the boy's graffiti was an apparent cry for help.

"These kinds of cases are always very disturbing," Tate said. "This one is unusual in that it involves a mother and her son. Usually, it's a father assaulting his daughter."

The boys' father was not living with his sons, who remain in foster care pending the outcome of the case.

The woman is being held without bond in the parish jail in Covington.

Aggravated rape carries a mandatory life sentence without the possibility of parole. Prosecutors have the option of seeking the death penalty because the boy is younger than 12.

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