In contrast to statutory rape, other rape charges occur when a person forces another person to have sex with them.Statutory rape laws were created to protect America's youth who are especially vulnerable.The original purpose of these laws was to protect young unwed females from adult males who might impregnate them and fail to provide support for their child.The rational of statutory rape laws is to preserve the marriageability of young unwed girls and to prevent teenage pregnancy. In Rhode Island the age of consent is sixteen (16).Although the term refers to adults having sex with minors below the age of consent, very few jurisdictions actually use the language statutory rape.In Rhode Island, statutory rape is called "." Different states use different terms for the crime such as corruption of a minor, rape of a child, unlawful carnal knowledge or simply carnal knowledge. Forcible Rape Statutory rape is different than forcible rape in that force or threat is not present.Most states do not refer specifically to statutory rape; instead they use designations such as sexual assault and sexual abuse to identify prohibited activity.Regardless of the designation, these crimes are based on the premise that until a person reaches a certain age, he is legally incapable of consenting to sexual intercourse.
For example, California, Maryland, Missouri, Nevada, and New York reserve their harshest statutory rape penalty for offenders who are age 21 or older.(1) If the minor is under age 15, five years in prison; (2) if the offender is at least age 18 or is tried as an adult and the minor was age 12 or younger, life in prison and the offender is ineligible for release until serving 35 years; (3) if the offender is at least 18 or tried as an adult and the victim is age 12, 13, or 14, the presumptive sentence is 20 years; or (4) if the minor is at least age 15, it is punishable by one year in prison Sexual assault to knowingly inflicts sexual intrusion or sexual penetration on a victim (1) under age 15 if the actor is at least four years older or (2) at least 15 years old but less than 17 years old and the actor is at least 10 years older.Recently a client of mine who is 17, started dating a 23 year old man, and while the age difference isn’t drastic, one has to think, what would a 23 year old man who could date anyone 18 and up, want with a 17 year old high school student? Of course they had a lot of that, often unprotected, but luckily she never got pregnant although she hasn’t gotten tested for any sexually transmitted diseases.I told her when she initially talked about him pursuing her, his reason was that there aren’t any girls 21 and up that were “cool”, that there just wasn’t something right about a man who should be on the verge of finishing college, dating someone who’s in high school.I don’t want to end our friendship because of this. However any minor’s a parent can forbid the adult from having contact with their child.Without parental approval the relationship would be unlawful.During the teenage years, young people are trying to come into their own and often rebel against their parents and other adults, which is why they often chose friends and relationships that their parents disapprove of, including dating older men.