Duluth man intentionally exposes woman to HIV, gets 90 days in jail


The Duluth man who knowingly exposed his female partner to the HIV virus through unprotected sex has been sentenced to 90 days in jail and more than $400 in fines. Apparently exposing someone to a deadly and lifelong disease isn't a big deal in the court of law.

Jessie Allen Tuff, 39, pleaded guilty to the crime last month. He was charged with intentionally inflicting or attempting to inflict bodily harm to sexual partner Debra Jean Miller by having unprotected sex with her and not telling her he had the AIDS virus.

This is believed to be the first case of its kind in Minnesota. Miller said she was in a consensual sexual relationship with Tuff between October and November 2008. She found out he was HIV positive when she read an email sent to him by his ex-wife who said she got the disease from him. The ex-wife provided medical records that shows Tuff had had HIV for more than 10 years. Miller has tested negative for HIV.

More from the Duluth News Tribune:

Debra Jean Miller heard the man who exposed her to the AIDS virus apologize to her Tuesday before he was sentenced to 90 days in custody, but the 50-year-old Duluth woman said she's paid a price for going public with her story of betrayal.

"I don't date and I tend to seclude myself in my apartment,'' Miller said. "When I do go out, some people shun me. I will be branded by this for years to come.''

Tuff told the court he would no longer take part in sex without a condom. Miller isn't so sure. She said she considers Tuff "a predator without remorse.''