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Statutory rape is a sex crime that is also known as sex with a minor. It refers to sexual intercourse between one or two minors under the age of consent. Some states set the age of consent at seventeen or eighteen, while others set it as low as sixteen. It is also important to know that if the defendant believed that the minor was above the age of consent, they may or may not be charged. If you have been charged with statutory rape, it is important to talk to a statutory rape attorney from your state to see what the law says regarding your case. The difference between rape and statutory rape is the absence of violence and force. In most cases, the minor or minors willingly engage in sexual relations. However, it is still considered statutory rape. By law, they are unable to give consent, even if they verbally did so.

The penalties for statutory rape will vary depending of the nature of the case. Some of these factors include: the age of the victim, the age gap between the victim and the defendant, any prior sex offense convictions, the involvement of alcohol or drugs, and if a pregnancy resulted from the crime. Statutory rape can be charged with as a felony or a misdemeanor. If you are convicted of statutory rape, you could be facing time in jail or prison, probation, fines, and counseling. You may even have to register as a sex offender for the remainder of your life.

If both individuals were under the age of consent, Romeo and Juliet Laws may apply. These laws may lessen the charge from a felony to a misdemeanor or they may lower the level of punishment. However, not every state operates under these laws, so again it is important to consult with an attorney.

As this crime can be classified as either a misdemeanor or a felony, having an experienced statutory rape attorney defending your case could make all the difference. Contact an attorney today so they can review your case and ascertain what the best option is for you.