Woman marries her foster son
A former foster mother is facing charges of attempted bigamy for allegedly marrying her 15-year-old foster son in 1996 at the Love’s Wedding Chapel in Stateline.
Charlene Whitworth was brought to the attention of the Douglas County District Attorney’s Office by Contra Costa County prosecutors. Whitworth is now serving time in the Contra Costa County Jail for two counts of statutory rape in connection with her involvement with the juvenile and his 13-year-old friend.
Gary Koeppel, Contra Costa deputy district attorney, said the boy was placed in Whitworth and her husband’s, Anthony Wilson, care in November of 1995 when he was 14. Between November and May, Whitworth, who was in her mid 20s, began a sexual relationship with the boy. She provided him with alcohol and helped him purchase marijuana, Koeppel said. During this time Whitworth also had sex with the boy’s 13-year-old friend.
Police were alerted to the relationship after Wilson accused the minor of sleeping with his wife and battered him. The boy admitted the relationship to police and charges of statutory rape were filed against Whitworth.
During prosecution on those charges Koeppel said Whitworth traveled with the boy and his father to South Shore in July of 1996, even though she was under a court order to stay away from the boy. Whitworth allegedly altered the boy’s birth certificate to make him 16 – the age of consent in Nevada. The boy’s father then allegedly gave his consent to the marriage and represented that the boy was 16. Whitworth was still legally married to Wilson.
Koeppel said Whitworth was also pregnant with the boy’s child at this time, but lost it in a miscarriage around November of 1996. Whitworth plead guilty to the statutory rape charges in Contra Costa County that same month. She was sentenced to a year in the county jail and three years formal probation. Before going into custody, Koeppel said Whitworth became pregnant again by the boy, and the following year gave birth to a son.
Within a couple of weeks after finishing her time in the county jail, Whitworth moved in with the boy, violating her probation, Koeppel said. Whitworth became pregnant again and gave birth to their second child. Koeppel said the probation department learned of Whitworth’s violation and requested that probation be terminated. The District Attorney’s office denied that request and asked the court to send Whitworth to state prison. Instead, Whitworth was sentenced to another nine months in county jail. She is now serving that time.
“When she gets out the boy will be 18, but there will still be a no contact order,” Koeppel explained. “He’ll have to go to court and ask for it to be removed. This is a kid that the system gave up on a long time ago.”
Koeppel said the couple’s two children are with Whitworth’s parents.
Douglas County Deputy District Attorney Alan J. Buttell filed charges of attempted bigamy, a category C felony, against Whitworth Tuesday. A warrant was issued for her arrest.
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