A Missouri man allegedly exposed more than 300 partners to HIV, according to a local police department, which confirmed his arrest on Thursday.
The man, David Lee Mangum, 37, admitted to having unprotected sex with hundreds of men without telling them he had HIV, reports USA Today.
Mangum’s case has prompted Stoddard County Prosecuting Attorney Russell Oliver to ask anyone who had sex with the suspect or any anonymous male they met on Craigslist to stop sexual activity and get tested for HIV.
The case was made known when a man calling himself Mangum’s former live-in partner came forward to file a complaint against him. The man claimed he was exposed to HIV via his former partner.
The man, D.B. explained he met his partner on Craigslist and Mangum assured him he had no sexually transmitted diseases before they had sex. They lived together from November until June when D.B. realized his partner was cheating on him. He tested positive for HIV in July.
ABC News notes that the Mississippi man was charged with “reckless exposure to HIV,” a felony, after he admitted to it. He was arraigned on Thursday, but did not enter a plea. The judge set his bail at $250,000.
If he is convicted of exposing 300 partners to HIV, Mangum could face life in prison. While the Missouri man awaits trial in jail, Oliver stated that their main focus is “to get it onto the public view.” He explained, “Our concern is for public health.”
Oliver went on to say, “Any individual who may have come into contact with this man, or through Craigslist, if you met a man in Stoddard County and engaged in sex, we’d urge you to get tested and cease all sexual activity. Better safe than sorry.”
The Missouri man tested positive for HIV in 2003 and admitted between then and now he had more than 300 sexual partners. As to why he didn’t disclose his HIV status to partners, the Missouri man explained it was “fear of rejection.”
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