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by Abigail Van Buren

Woman Wants to Believe Sex Offender's Claim of Innocence

DEAR ABBY: My boyfriend, "Claude," and I are deeply in love. He's devoted to me and my son. He brings me candy and flowers and takes me out. He includes my son in everything we do.

My problem is, he recently mentioned that he is on the national sex offenders list. He says he didn't do it and that he was framed. It happened years ago -- if it happened at all -- and he doesn't like to talk about it.

Abby, I need your advice. Should I believe him or run the other way? It scares me to think that I am putting my son in danger, but then again, I don't believe Claude did what they say he did. Please help me. -- MOM IN THE SOUTH

DEAR MOM: The first thing you should do is check the national sex offenders database. Find out if Claude should, by virtue of the fact that he is a convicted sex offender, even be around children. Learn the facts of what happened from the authorities in that community. And then, think with your head instead of your heart and put your son's welfare above everything.