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Teen charged with statutory rape
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A Dawsonville teenager is facing statutory rape and child molestation charges after admitting to having had a sexual relationship with a 15-year-old girl.

According to the Dawson County Sheriff's Office, 17-year-old Stephen Bradley Hermann has been charged with two counts of aggravated child molestation, enticing a child for indecent purposes, sodomy and statutory rape, all misdemeanors.

Sheriff's Maj. Ray Goodie said the charges were misdemeanors based on the age difference between the suspect and the girl.

The offenses, which were reported by a relative of the girl, took place between April 14 and June 7 at various locations in the county, he said.

According to Goodie, phone messages indicated that the sexual contact appeared to have been consensual. While that may have been the case, he said the state's age of consent is 16.

"He was charged with statutory rape because it was consensual. However, a person under the age of 16 can't consent to sex in Georgia," Goodie said.

Hermann was taken into custody June 11 following an interview with authorities at the local law enforcement center. He was released Friday after posting a $15,200 bond, according to jail records.

Goodie said the investigation is ongoing and additional charges are possible.