18-Year-Old Arrested for Having Sex With 14-Year-Old

This is a press release from the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office. The information has not been proven in a court of law and any individuals described should be presumed innocent until proven guilty:

mendocino sheriff's cloth badge

On 04/06/2018 at 8:30 PM, a Mendocino County Sheriff’s Deputy was contacted by a resident of Potter Valley, who reported that their 14 year old daughter had allegedly been having sexual relations with 18 year old Potter Valley resident Swan Thomas Johnson.  The Deputy Sheriff initiated an investigation into the matter and he was assisted by Mendocino County Sheriff’s Detectives.

During the course of the investigation, it was determined that the 14 year old victim, had been having sexual intercourse with the suspect, an 18 year old male. The sexual relations began prior to the victims 14th birthday, beginning when she was 13. Multiple sexual incidents and acts were disclosed and investigated.

At the conclusion of the investigation, the suspect was located driving on Main Street in Potter Valley by a Sheriff’s Deputy where he was stopped and taken into custody without incident. The suspect was booked into the Mendocino County Jail where he is held in lieu of bail which is set according to the bail schedule at $75,000.

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88 comments

  • Assuming it was not forcible rape….
    I would like to know if they teach youth in their school district specifically about ‘age of consent’ laws. That is NOT to assist the young man with an ‘I didn’t know’ defense. But rather to examine how well our generally progressive culture is preparing young people not only about laws, but about aspects of psychological maturity as related to age and sex.
    And let’s hope the girl, if she is not traumatized, has been offered love and understanding, rather than guilt and shame.

    • I am sure most people have heard the term “jail bait”.
      The legal adult has the responsibility and will be held accountable.

      • I doubt that people are questioning that the boy be held “accountable”, yet that term is very broad. There are likely many interpretations of what that accountability should be. That he has been arrested, named in the local press, will likely be socially shamed and his future impaired, and that he will go through the legal process is the first degree of accountability which IS being imposed.
        As I wrote earlier; my comments are based on the assumption he is not a sleazy guy who intended to lure the young girl into a sexual trap, nor that he overtly manipulated or threatened her in any way. If he did, my opinion is changed.

        • An18 year old having sex with a 13 year old is way out of line! And I would say wether or not the school teaches it everyone knows if you are 18 you don’t have sex with underage girls or you could go to jail and if you don’t know that then as an 18 year you old boy there is something wrong with your head and your parents.

          • But if you Are 17 years and 360 days old it is just worlds better? Or a 16 year old with a 50 year old in some states? Age of consent laws are some of the most arbitrary crap I have ever seen. Let me tell you that the school system doesn’t teach shit about this and yes there are plenty of parents who don’t either.

            • In some states it is legal for a 50 YO to “Marry an underage individual” usually a female!!! That “Piece of paper makes ALL the difference ya know…. NOT!!!!

              • Dude I know it is legal. I live one state away from another with a 16 vs 18 age of consent law. That is my entire point. How can it be such a strict moral standard when it vastly changes when you cross over imaginary lines on a map?

        • Ben Round, totally see what you’re saying. When I was 16, I dated someone several years older than me. I had people around me telling me it was a bad idea, but I thought I knew best. Now almost 7 years later, I realize what an idiot I was and any adult willing to date a highschooler should’ve been a huge red flag. I mean good lord, had I realized it at the time I could’ve saved myself so much trauma. But at the time, I didn’t realize it was traumatic. If I could go back now and tell my little 16 year old self to stop, I would.

          The adult is the one breaking the law and it’s their job to know better and to stop it. However, there needs to be more open communication and education about all the repercussions to the younger person too. It’s never the younger person’s fault in the eyes of the law, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t better prepare younger people.

      • What if he was 17, or younger when they got together? In love, now I’m 18 we have to brake up?
        Not saying it’s right, but it happens.

  • Depending on the character and maturity of the involved parties, i would think either:
    Bummer! The modern moral police state stomps on young love! Girls are always more mature than boys in adolescence, and a younger girl/older guy pairing is natural. A hundred years ago, people would have thought this age difference normal in a relationship, and shaken their heads in amazement at our prohibitions.
    or… Scuzzbag dude can’t find anyone his own age, and preys on young, innocent girl who will be flattered by the “older man” attention; if it were my daughter i’d say, Throw him to the wolves.

    • I would agree.. but honestly.. it’s not a big deal in my book. I would have more sympathy for the guy who will be a registered sex offender for the rest of his life, which is a terrible, terrible label to wear.

    • Don't Drink While Pregnant

      there is a huge gulf of knowledge, development, experience, maturity, etc. between a 13 year old and an 18 year old, no matter whether the older party is a scuzzbag or not, and regardless of the genders. think back to where you were psychologically and what you thought you knew about sex at 13 and again at 18.

      13 is middle school. might not have even had a full, comprehensive sex ed class yet. 18 is old enough to drive, vote, purchase a firearm, smoke, and serve in the armed forces. we have these laws for a reason – if the child gets pregnant, she’s less likely to finish high school or get a GED with a baby, while the adult is in a position to skip town, change his name, and never face any responsibility for leaving a child behind to raise a child.

      • Not old enough to smoke anymore… legal age now 21.

        In Hawaii, so crazy I think! Legal age is 16… and 14 with parental consent, also the high school has a daycare for students with babies!!

    • I would make sure my daughter was educated and protected and not feeling taken advantage of.

  • He must have never heard the phrase 14 will get you 20….

    • Why is the Age of Consent in Washington DC only 16, and nobody EVER discusses this fact?? The whole political scene in DC is geared to drinking and debauchery. How is this not commonly known?

  • Not Saying it's Right

    Not saying it’s right ,, but I assume … they where 13 and 17 when this all started ,and family waited till he turned 18 to turn him in … But I do Not Know the Whole Story ,, Just Here Say ,, >>>>>>>>>>Still Not Saying It’s Right <<<<<<<<<<<<

    • Nothing magical happens on the 18th birthday except a lot of laws kick in. There is no moral barrier at age 18 as evidence by the vastly different age of consent laws throughout the world. We need the investigate the facts and use some common sense in situations like this. Issues like this are way too complex to blindly rely on numbers. It is ok to have them as some type of guideline, but there should be wiggle room for kids acting like kids. I remember being 18 and 14, not much of a difference in my experience. The parents must not like the boyfriend much to rat him out like this. Hope he learns a valuable lesson about the laws and is able to recover and move past this situation.

  • Or he has not been educated on what “jail bait” is.

  • So was this also prior to his 18th birthday?

    • That’s a really interesting question!

    • Yes. I wondered that too. That they mentioned her 14th b’day as a factor, I assumed if they looked into his age when it all started. Unless, of course, they want to railroad or make an example of him.

      • I want to say that 13 compared to 14 makes it a bigger deal something along the lines of she is a child not a teenager, and yes I know 13 has teen in it. I believe it is one of the legal lines in the sand that mean more serious charges and more jail time bordering on child molesting compared to statutory rape.

    • missing the point. the whole things a travesty.

  • Veteran's Friend

    He will now be branded for LIFE for the folly of young love.
    She will feel guilt. He will feel shame.
    I will feel sorry for both of them.
    The parents have not done anyone a real service. Society reaps no benefit.
    Bummer all around.

  • He will wear the pedo label for the rest of his life, which is what he deserves. That girl needs help and support.

    • Veteran's Friend

      You were never young, eh Elvis?

      • I was. Good one vet friend. Not saying this is right but come on people. These are kids,both of them. I’ve made MANY mistakes in life. Some far worse.

        • Don't Drink While Pregnant

          no, one is a kid, and one is an adult.

        • I think the prior relationship should be taken into account. He is 18 and needs counseling to direct him into making better judgements while in a 6-8 month prison sentence. I think the pedo card is way to harsh for this case. I understand it for a Mid 30’s jumping on a teenager, someone abusing their position of power or some other creepy shit. But, it doesn’t make sense for this type of crime

      • starting to think straight up virgin.. is this the thunderdome ??

    • That is a LIFE SENTENCE for him. Too harsh, unless, possibly, if he is determined to be ‘attracted to children’. More likely, he’s just horny and insecure (neither traits rare to an 18yo). If the former is not true, I have little doubt he is currently in the throughs of a MAJOR wake-up call!

    • He doesn’t “deserve” anything, they are children!

      • No, SHE is a child and he is almost 19 and a child predator, doomed to a cycle of violence against women unless he’s held accountable for his actions.

    • Elvis has apparently not been with many women, especially when a teen. Excusable.

      They are in fact ((much)) smarter than we, and mature faster. 14 and 18 is a f’n bad joke. Feel bad for both of em, if they were in young love I’d imagine em both screaming and crying… while old salmon swimming upstream to give birth and die decide their futures.

      Maybe there’s an evolutionary reason for the salmons tactics.

  • Alvaro escareno was twice that age doing a 14 year old…he is walking free…

  • Don’t be so quick to judge

    Curious to know if this started before the boy was 18, how long the parents knew this was happening before they reported it. Maybe these two really love each other. At their ages they are both young and naive. To say this boy is a piece of shit is just ignorant. You have no idea who the boy is. He could be the sweetest young man you’ve ever met… you don’t know that. When I was 14 I had an 18 year old boyfriend… and you know I wish i wasn’t such a little bitch to him because he was the nicest guy I’ve ever dated!

    • Don't Drink While Pregnant

      a 13 or 14 year old is WAY more naive than an 18 year old.

      • Individuals mature at wildly different rates with unique mental capacities, education, life experiences, etc.
        People like to make everything black and white so they can make their bitchy moral judgements atop their high horses.
        Life is complex, and judging others in an attempt to eek out a feeling of superiority is a widespread sickness.
        These kids may be a well-matched and natural couple, or, he may be a predatory creep deserving of his criminal charges.
        But to judge without knowing the details is wrong.

    • In California, if two underage people have sex, they are both committing statutory rape. Two 17-year-old having sex are guilty of statutory rape here.

  • IF this was consensual and both knew what they were doing, both parties should be charged.

    • And which of us knew what we were doing, really, as teenagers? I hope the parents discovered the tryst before anyone became pregnant.

    • Don't Drink While Pregnant

      minors cannot consent, so…

      • So how come more than 200,000 children have been married in the United States in the past 15 years?

        • Some states allow marriage at 13, some 14, some 15, some require parental consent some don’t.

          Comment boards have a way of making everyone seem painfully unaware/ undereducated..

          Thanks for the factual contrib, FC.

        • Freedom Club & Bboy – Because of pedophiles like JERRY Lee Lewis, and Woody Allen, and people like you who condone it, that’s why

  • Charged? For being human animals with sexual desire in a society where sex is thrown at you and then your told no no no ..who knows what the specifics are but if they both knew then how and why should they be charged with exploring?

  • The Hermit of Grizzly Mountain

    Legalities aside, The Creepy Rule is you can date someone half your age plus seven.
    So an 18 year-old can date a 16 year-old. If they date anyone younger that’s creepy!

    • So a 20 year old can have sex with a 17 year old ?

      • Good point….

      • The Hermit of Grizzly Mountain

        I said creepy, not “can”. And its not my rule. And it’s a fuzzy around the edges “rule of thumb”, not a law.
        I’d ask the parents of the 17 year-old what they think.
        I think it may be somewhat less creepy if the 20 year-old just had a birthday, and the 17 year-old is about to have one.
        OTOH, if the 20 year-old is soon to turn 21 and the 17 year-old was 16 only last week, that is indeed creepy in my opinion.

        • If we are using creepy for a barometer for legality and morality we should immediately burn every single bible in this country…. To all the people completely misusing the term pedophile that is reserved for mature adults who have an attraction to prepubescent children. Even a 60 year old dude who is into high school girls is not a pedophile. In almost every other species of animal on this planet it is biologically natural to be attracted to the opposite sex of your species once they are physically mature enough to reproduce. Not saying that kids should be having kids a that age, but the attraction is nothing I am every going to crucify someone for. We have way way way bigger problems to be focusing on in society.

          • The Hermit of Grizzly Mountain

            I said “legalities aside.”
            And I personally am on the side of protecting kids from predators and applaud strong parental supervision.
            Kids brains don’t fully develop until age 25 or so- until then many youths may make poor choices on their own.
            And the rule-of-thumb calculates that it’s creepy when a 60 year-old dates someone younger than 37.

  • They will charge the male with statutory rape. The law is not gender specific. Equal treatment.

  • I knew a dirty old perv who was going on and on about how “hot” his grand-daughter was. He said she was 12 years old but still had a body like and 8 year old. He did a few years of hard time in the big house. He got caught selling kiddie porn. Filthy, filthy, filthy!

  • Shakespeare had Juliet (13 years old) several years younger than Romeo, thought to have been meant to be 18-23. But that’s not why their families had trouble with the union!

    • Don't Drink While Pregnant

      Romeo and Juliet isn’t about “true love”, it’s about how stupid and impulsive teenagers are. It’s not a romance, it’s a cautionary tale.

  • Looking at the list of preverts (Megan`s list), I haven`t found anyone on there who`s committed bestiality. Is it because sheep never dial 911? Surely there must be a few who`ve been caught; it`s not at all uncommon.

  • I’ve seen people on this site make excuses for drug addicts, drug suppliers, criminals, and more but this is a first making excuses for a child molester (only by the strictest legal definition) it really makes me regret the time that we live in.

    • The good old days, when men wer men, and sheep wer scared 😱 🐑

      • Well I guess kym didn’t like my sheep joke….it took me a while to make that one up! Can I tell a clean sheep joke?

    • Child molester? 🙄 dramatic much? come on lighten up.. I know 14 year old girls who are very much young ladies and way more mature than plenty of 18 year olds. Puritanical laws.. waste of money and time. Kids will be kids.

      • No Emily, not dramatic that is the legal definition, 18 and 13 makes it so. Like if you kill someone you are a murderer. If you don’t like the definition of words I don’t know what to tell. Red Is red, water is wet, and sleeping with a 13 year old is child molesting. It’s not a new thing and it is not a secret. “Kids will be kids”? Yeah and adults try to keep other adults from sleeping with their kids

        • If it is such a concert moral issue as you state riddle me this…. How come age of consent laws vary so greatly throughout the world when you cross over invisible lines on a map? In your example water is wet by virtue of science, not because the majority of people agree on it. Would you call our service men and women murderers because they have killed someone in the line of duty? Things aren’t always as black and white as people who don’t want to think deeply try and make them. Understanding context and nuance isn’t something you people should be so scared of. The concept of right and wrong is strictly a human invention. And for a fact it is actually new because for the vast vast vast majority of history on this planet there was absolutely nothing wrong with two sexually mature apes mating.

          • Buddy all I know for a fact is the judge isn’t going to agree with your “his brain is wired different” they heard it allot and they just flat don’t care.

  • A man with whom I was friends once gave me his explanation justifying and excusing child molesting and why it was harmless. I realized he was weird and ended the friendship. He was an English, which isn`t surprising since a lot of Englishmen are perverted.

  • Goodness gracious great balls of fire !

    • Actually Jerry Lee Lewis the man who wrote those lyrics was a bit of a child molester himself!!! He married his MUCH younger cousin as a way to “legalize his activities”!!!

      • Yeah, Dan, that’s the whole bit. That’s why “great balls of fire” is a funny comment right there. Way to explain away the funny in a perfectly good sarcastic punchline.

  • So was the 18 year old still 18 when the 14 year old was 13? Or was the 18 year old actually 17 when the other was 13? Not sure it matters with the morality of the situation. Legally, maybe???

  • When I was 13 yrs old ,I knew right from wrong. I still did wrong. All I can say to young men is be careful who you pick as your friends and be extra careful where you put your pecker.

  • There’s something very wrong with a system where a teen can have his entire life destroyed with a felony record, simply because he was doing what normal teens do a million times a day in this country. What percent of you on this website waited until age 18 to have sex? 10% 20%?

    • The summer between 8th grade and freshman year here. Both of us not much older than the gal in this article. We knew exactly what we were doing and did it responsibly. Don’t regret a thing about it.

  • A huge problem with these laws, is that people LIE about their age. Especially teen girls. This happened to me quite often when I was younger. When I was 24, a girl told me she was 18. She looked every day of it. heck, she was 5’11” and built. We had a fling all summer long, and she moved away. 5 years later, she emailed me and told me she had actually been 14 at the time. GD it, so how is a guy supposed to deal with that, or prevent that? Sure, you can try to get men to ask for ID(but who does?), but then again fake IDs aren’t rare these days.

    Idea: if a girl lies about her age, and tells a guy she is over 18, and they later have sex, then SHE must be charged with a felony as well. We need to make this dis-incentive go BOTH ways.

    • You make some really good points. I have had a very similar experience to you. She had no drivers license so even if I want to ask for proof I couldn’t really get any. How about we use our time and resources on real victims and not people who willingly had sex with another. Look at the shit young girls are exposed to on tv and in advertising. So many want to demonize this young man. How about we take a look at how we exploit sexuality in our culture and the type of behavior we tolerate. The wise choice is to turn this into a teaching moment, not something that will ruin this guy for the rest of his life and surely make it much much more difficult for him to be a positive functioning member of society.

  • Outrageously ridiculous waste of time, resources, and maybe even a couple brain cells.

    For shame., LEO for shame.

    • Not a coincidence that all of you are so worried about the boys’ lives over the minor girls’! If she has no drivers license DONT HAVE SEX WITH HER. You’re a bunch of whiners – if you want to have sex – have it with someone at least 17 or older – your desire for sex is NO excuse to fuck a minor. Nor is all your crap about how women mature earlier than boys – so what!? They are still CHILDREN. Like it’s going to destroy your life if you can’t have sex with that ONE PARTICULAR 15 year old?! Cry me a river. And you’ve had all the”teaching moments” you’re gonna get for the last 2,000 + years so get over it. NO, WE ARE NOT GOING TO ALLOW YOU TO FUCK, OR FUCK WITH, MINORS. Now go find something REAL to complain about, like why men are raping, battering, sex-trafficking, and murdering women and girls all over the world RIGHT NOW.

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