Tennessee ‘Octodad’ has 24 children, not 30

The Los Angeles Times and many other news outlets recently ran stories about Desmond Hatchett going to court and “pleading with the state of Tennessee to help him pay for child support.”

Desmond Hatchett

The stories said that the 32-year-old man set a Knox County record for his ability to reproduce. “He has 30 children with 11 women,” the Times reported.

“Just one problem — the story’s not true,” reports today’s Knoxville News-Sentinel.

Its story continues:

Stan Briggs, Knox County Juvenile Court child support magistrate, said he hasn’t seen Hatchett since 2009.

Briggs, who remembers Hatchett well, said that’s just the start of the errors.

“I think they spelled Desmond’s name right,” Briggs said Wednesday. “That was it. Basically everything in the (LA Times and WREG) story was incorrect.”

Juvenile Court records show Hatchett has fathered 24 children — still the highest total on record in Knox County but half a dozen short of the progeny credited to him. He hasn’t fathered a single child in the past three years and probably won’t for a while.

The magistrate suspects that a 2009 interview with Hackett that aired on WVLT-TV was circulated as fresh news, with a few children added to the story.

* He’s prolific, but Knoxville dad doesn’t have 30 kids (knoxnews.com)
* Man who fathered 30 kids with 11 women asks court for child support break (LAT)
* Tennessee man dubbed “Octodad”: Questions and more questions (LAT)
* 2009 TV report: 29-year-old man has 21 babies by 11 women (WVLT)