State v. Sheridan, ___ N.C. App. ___, 824 S.E.2d 146 (Feb. 5, 2019)

There was sufficient evidence that a parent-child relationship existed between the defendant and the victim to sustain a conviction for sexual offense in a parental role. A parental role includes evidence of emotional trust, disciplinary authority, and supervisory responsibility, with the most significant factor being whether the defendant and the minor “had a relationship based on trust that was analogous to that of a parent and child.” The defendant paid for the victim’s care and support when she was legally unable to work and maintain herself and made numerous representations of his parental and supervisory role over her. He indicated to police he was her “godfather,” represented to a friend that he was trying to help her out and get her enrolled in school, and told his other girlfriends the she was his “daughter.” Additionally, while there was no indication that the defendant was a friend of the victim’s family, he initiated a relationship of trust by approaching the victim with references to his daughter, who was the same age, and being “always” present when the two girls were “hanging out” at his house. This was sufficient evidence of the defendant’s exercise of a parental role over the victim.