Age Sex Crimes

Age sex crimes in Minnesota include an age element.  As a result, the age of consent matters.  These crimes depend upon the age of the people involved in a prohibited sexual act.  Often, age alone is what makes the act prohibited.  The most common consensual sex crime is statutory rape.  A crime by technicality, statutory rape is consensual sex.  But either one party is two young; or the age difference is too great.  It’s not “real rape” or common law rape, which requires coercion or lack of consent.

What is Statutory rape?

Statutory rape refers to sex crime prosecutions against a person in a consensual sexual relationship.  The crime requires that one of the pair is too young.  The law would strip away the younger person’s right to consent or not.  The law would criminalize sexual activity by a person under a certain age.

What is the Age of Consent?

Age sex crimes: is it statutory rape?  The age of consent matters
Age sex crimes: is it statutory rape? The age of consent matters

As you’d expect, the age of consent matters when it comes to Minnesota age sex crimes.

What age?

Laws relating to the age of consent vary from one state or jurisdiction to another.

In Minnesota Criminal Sexual Conduct Statutes, the most important age is 16.  So, most age-based sex crimes apply to persons under the age of 16.  But some apply to persons under the age of 18.

Minnesota’s statutes on the minimum age for a legally recognizable marriage set that age at 18; or 16 years, with the consent of the person’s legal custodial parents, guardian, or the court.  Minnesota Statutes Section 517.02.

Throughout human history, however, the age of consent and marriage has generally been the age of adolescence.

Even today, the age of consent varies in the states of the United States, and in the nations of North and South America.  If a lover is below the age of consent, you risk an age sex crimes charge.

Juvenile sex crime

Prosecutors charge juveniles with sex crimes, too.  And often the only fact that makes the lover a criminal is age.  So, should young love be a crime?  Should we ruin the lives of the young, for this?

When juveniles face sex crime charges, a big concern is getting a criminal record.  Felony juvenile delinquency charges for those 16 and older are public.  And almost all criminal sexual conduct charges are felonies.  But even “nonpublic” juvenile court records are shared with schools, police and others.

And no matter how young, anyone with a Minnesota felony juvenile sex crime adjudication must register as a predatory offender for at least ten years.  This includes kids facing charges as young as ten years old.

With so much at stake, every child deserves representation by a good sex crimes defense attorney.

Romeo and Juliet laws

In Shakespeare’s masterpiece Romeo and Juliet, Juliet was not yet fourteen years old.  Romeo’s age was unstated, but scholars have generally viewed him to have been a young adult.  Minnesota’s sex crime laws criminalizing age make an exception for lovers who are, though young, close enough in age.  This reflects a cultural view that age should not be a crime for lovers close in age; but should be for one who is “too old.”

For more on this, check out our article: Romeo and Juliet Law: Minnesota Sex Crimes Based On Age.

Minneapolis Sex Crimes Attorney Thomas Gallagher

Age sex crimes have serious consequences.  You should have the best defense attorney possible, with experience defending Criminal Sexual Conduct charges.  Defense goals include:

We have many ways to defend clients from these age sex crimes charges.  But make no mistake.  These cases are hard fought.  So you need a serious sex crimes defense attorney.  For serious help, call Defense Attorney Thomas Gallagher.

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