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Authorities arrested a Lake Worth man they said had sex with his girlfriend without informing her that he was HIV-positive, the South Florida Sun Sentinel reported.
Nathanial Faulk, 51, was arrested Tuesday night and faces 10 counts of an HIV-infected person having sex without informing his or her partner, according to online records. Faulk remains in jail on $50,000 bond and could face up to 50 years in prison if convicted.
Deputies were notified of the alleged crime after Faulk’s unidentified live-in girlfriend found his HIV medication in a nightstand. The couple had been living together for just under a month.
Faulk then confessed to his girlfriend that he had the virus for two years, but informed authorities he contracted it eight years ago, the newspaper said.
“I didn’t know how to tell you,” Faulk was quoted as telling her. “I’m sorry.”
The man’s girlfriend was tested for HIV on Tuesday, but tests normally take 10 days to return results.
Faulk said he didn’t think his girlfriend contracted the virus, but Florida law provides for punishing offenders even if the partner does not become infected, according to the Sun Sentinel. He told the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office that his girlfriend wanted to have unprotected sex.
"There's no rhyme or reason why people don't report it," Reid Scott, assistant state attorney, was quoted as saying. “But vulnerable people are often unsure of what to do or say."
Faulk’s other possible partners were not immediately known by authorities.
Authorities ask anyone who may have been involved with Faulk to call 561-688-4140.