A man who impregnated a 13-year-old girl was sentenced Thursday to seven years and eight months in prison.
Joseph Poindexter, 21, must also register as a sex offender and isn’t allowed to visit the victim until she’s 21 years old in 2026, said Kern County Superior Court Judge John R. Brownlee, who described this offense as “egregious.”
The sexual relationship “lasted at least two years, knowing his actions could mentally and physically harm the victim,” Brownlee said.
Poindexter was 18 when a sexual relationship began between himself and a girl, according to the Kern County District Attorney’s Office. The girl became pregnant soon after and gave birth to her daughter in 2020.
Poindexter’s attorney Phillip Gillet noted the girl wasn’t going to school when their relationship began, and his client assumed the girl was older than her age. Poindexter, who was still in high school, didn’t have a stable home and lived with the victim and her mother, Gillet added.
The victim was a willing participant in the relationship according to her own testimony, Gillet said.
Both were dating, Gillet said, which is different from a 30 year old having sex with someone younger than 18.
“The defendant wants to support his daughter,” Gillet said. “Going to prison for a long period of time will interfere with both his relationship with his daughter and his ability to support his daughter.”
Gillet later noted Poindexter hasn’t had sex with any other girls.
But Deputy District Attorney Brad Taconi said a child cannot ever be a willing participant to a sexual relationship, especially when it begins when the victim is a 13-year-old. Case law says she cannot consent. Poindexter preyed on the 13-year-old and continued doing so when she was 14, he added.
DNA analysis showed Poindexter to be the father, the DA’s Office wrote previously.
Poindexter was convicted of unlawful sexual intercourse and lewd or lascivious acts with a child under 14 years old.
You can reach Ishani Desai at 661-395-7417. You can also follow her at @_ishanidesai on Twitter.