MIAMI -- Former South Florida Catholic priest David Dueppen admits he fathered a baby with a former stripper but now wants custody of the infant girl.
In court documents filed this week in Miami-Dade family court, Dueppen said he wants majority custody of baby Marilyn Epiphany.
"He has never denied paternity for the child and he would like to be very involved in the child's life," his attorney, Raymon Rafool, said on Wednesday.
Rafool said Dueppen, 42, should have custody of the child at least 70 percent of the time.
The former stripper, Beatrice Hernandez, 42, came forward last month to claim that she had been Dueppen's on-again, off-again girlfriend since meeting him at Porky's strip club about seven years ago.
Dueppen joined the priesthood in 1999 and was last assigned to St. Maximilian Kolbe Church in Pembroke Pines. He took an indefinite leave of absence in August, after Hernandez reported the baby to the Archdiocese.
In court papers, Hernandez said Dueppen choked her during an argument over paternity and child support. Miami-Dade's family court has issued a temporary restraining order.
Dueppen denied the domestic abuse allegations, and is now looking for a job outside the priesthood, Rafool said.
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