What if your son was arrested for having sex with a girl that did not tell her age? 48 Answers as of June 19, 2013

My friend's son was arrested last night, for having sex with a minor. He is 20 and they have been seeing each other, visiting their house, stayed until 1:30am. Her parents were not concerned. They got caught having sex. And now it's all the boy's fault. But even though that he thought she was older and she wanted sex to. Why is it always the girls are innocent until they are caught?

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Edward  D. Dowling IV Attorney at Law
Edward D. Dowling IV Attorney at Law | Edward D. Dowling IV
The law regarding under age children having sex is that if they are under age of 18 they are not capable of legally cohsenting to have sex even if they in fact have "consented to have sex. Therefore if some one of age has sex with someone under age it is statutory rape.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 10/6/2011
Law Office of Ronald Aronds, LLC
Law Office of Ronald Aronds, LLC | Ronald Aronds
It's called statutory rape whether it involves an older man and a younger girl or the other way around. It doesn't matter at all if you didn't know the other person was a minor.
Answer Applies to: New Jersey
Replied: 10/4/2011
Michael R. Nack, Attorney at Law
Michael R. Nack, Attorney at Law | Michael R. Nack
An under-aged girl is, by definition, too young to legally give consent to anyone to have sex. It is the legal responsibility of the male to determine the age of the female before having sex. Your friend's son needs to hire the very best criminal defense attorney he can afford.
Answer Applies to: Missouri
Replied: 10/4/2011
Law Office of Tracey S. Sang
Law Office of Tracey S. Sang | Tracey Sang
Statutory rape is just that - forbidden by statute. That means that consent is not a defense. However, the facts of the situation are obviously taken into account when the case is being negotiated and, if the girl lied or consented, the punishment should be modified accordingly.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 10/4/2011
Craig W. Elhart, P.C.
Craig W. Elhart, P.C. | Craig Elhart
A young man should know the age of the girl before having sex with her. If she was 15 or younger, he can be charged even if he did not know how old she was.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 10/4/2011
    Law Office of James A Schoenberger
    Law Office of James A Schoenberger | James A Schoenberger
    Under the law, he is obligated to determine her age before having a sexual relationship.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 10/4/2011
    Law Office of Richard Southard
    Law Office of Richard Southard | Richard C Southard
    It is not that the girl is always innocent... It is the minor that is innocent because it is illegal for an adult to have sex with a person under the age of 17 in New York. I have seen cases where female teachers were arrested for having sex with boys under 17. A girl under 17 cannot legally consent to sex even if they are willing participants. Whether she said her age or even lied about her age is also irrelevant because no level of intent is required to be proven. The prosecutor need not prove he intended to have sex with a minor just that it occurred. However most prosecutors take into account if there was deception involved. Feel free to contact me directly f you have additional questions. Legal disclaimer: All answers are for information purposes only. Answering this question or any future questions does not form any attorney-client relationship. Be mindful, that answers are limited by the limited facts presented by the questioner and are not meant to take the place of competent legal advice by an attorney fully informed of all the facts surrounding your case. However, be aware that nothing posted in a public forum such as this can be deemed confidential or privileged communication.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 10/4/2011
    Law Office of Phillip Weiser
    Law Office of Phillip Weiser | Phillip L. Weiser
    Kansas has a statutory age of consent of 16, which means that anyone under 16 does not have the ability to consent to sexual acts. If she is under 16, you can be charged with rape even if she consented. This is a serious situation, and one that you should consult with an attorney to protect you from any inadvertent mistakes that could hurt you.
    Answer Applies to: Kansas
    Replied: 10/4/2011
    Freeborn Law Offices, P.S.
    Freeborn Law Offices, P.S. | Steve Freeborn
    Your son is in big trouble. A minor cannot consent to sexual relations. Even if she says yes, and even initiates the act, by the simple fact that she is a minor, your son can be charged with statutory rape. This is a conviction that will carry prison time and label your son as a sex offender. It is not a matter of the girl always being innocent, it is a matter of the age difference. Even if she lies about her age, it is not a defense. That is the law. You need to get your son an attorney. This is serious.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 10/4/2011
    Dunnings Law Firm
    Dunnings Law Firm | Steven Dunnings
    It's called statutory rape. Maybe your son needs to be more careful.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Law Office of Richard Williams
    Law Office of Richard Williams | Richard Williams
    Rape charges are tough on the male gender. Statutory rape is a crime that consent is not an issue, only ages and whether sexual intercourse occurred. There is nothing that can happen to the underage girl.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Burdon and Merlitti
    Burdon and Merlitti | Adam Van Ho
    Your friend and her son need to talk to an attorney as soon as possible. Anytime someone is charged with having sexual relations with a younger person, it becomes a very fact-specific case. The attorney would have to look at what happened and when, if there were indicators that the son should have used to figure our her true age, and then try to figure out a strategy for either trial or a plea. But as a general rule, people are responsible to know the age of the person they are having sex with, but this is a case that an attorney would need to evaluate further to give a more concrete answer.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Law Offices of John Carney
    Law Offices of John Carney | John Carney
    It is up to the man to determine if a woman has reached the age of consent. Before that she is incapable of consent. In some states it is 14-16, but in New York a woman must be 17 before she can give her consent to have any type of sexual intercourse, including oral sex. Ignorance of the law is no defense, nor is general ignorance. If you don't know that a girl is 16, or she lies to you, or she was in a bar, it is still statutory rape. That means that men are supposed to ask to see identification before they engage in sex with any girl that even looks young. Otherwise every man would be able to say,"I thought she was older" and avoid a conviction.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    The McDonnell Law Firm, PLLC
    The McDonnell Law Firm, PLLC | Patrick J. McDonnell
    Even if she showed him ID that she was of age, it is no defense to having sex with a girl under 17 years of age who, by law, is incapable of consent! If she is less than 5 years younger than he is, there is an affirmative defense to reduce the charge, but that does not relieve him of his liability completely. Consult a lawyer.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Dennis Roberts, a P.C.
    Dennis Roberts, a P.C. | Dennis Roberts
    There is a case that says that if the girl looked over 18 and said she was over 18 the defendant is OK. They will need her to testify if they want to make a case and if she refuses, there is no case unless he confessed.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg
    Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg | Eric Sterkenburg
    If a girl is under the age of consent (18) in California and agrees or even initiates the sex she is assumed that she did not have the maturity to consent. In order to convict for statutory rape under California Penal Code 261.5, the prosecutor must prove at three 1. That a male and female engaged in an act of sexual intercourse, 2. That the persons involved in the act were not married to each other at the, and 3. That the alleged victim was under 18 at the time of the offense. If you honestly and reasonably believed that the alleged victim was over 18 at the time you had sex, you can't be convicted under California statutory rape law. The types of evidence that can support your claim could include: Statements made by the alleged victim that he/she was over the age of 18, His/her attire and general appearance, and Where you met the alleged victim (at an adult party or venue). This is a serious charge and a guilty plea or judgment will last a life time. An attorney fee is a cheap price to avoid guilty.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Cynthia Henley, Lawyer
    Cynthia Henley, Lawyer | Cynthia Henley
    A person cannot legally consent to sexual touching or intercourse until they are 17 years old (and even if they consent, their consent is ineffectual.) The law against sex with minor is a strict liability offense - meaning that if you did it, you are guilty. It does not matter if she did not tell, if she lied and said she was older, if she produced a fake i.d. saying she was older, if her parent's consented to them having sex, if she had sex with others before and after, etc. None of that matters as far as the ability to prosecute and legally obtain a conviction. (The only "defense" is that the two were within 3 years of age of each other - which obviously does not apply if he is 20 because she would have to be 17+ and if that were true, it would not be a crime.) He needs a lawyer who will get busy working on the case and talking with the prosecutor about presenting a grand jury packet. The place to beat this kind of case is in the grand jury which can no bill because they want to do so. (If he were to go to trial and the jury followed the law in their instructions, they would have to find him guilty.)
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Jason Overton, Attorney at Law
    Jason Overton, Attorney at Law | Jason Overton
    In Alabama, a conviction for 2nd degree (or statutory) rape requires that one person was older than 16, the other was under 16, and there was at least 2 years difference in their ages. I guess the answer to your questions about why it is his fault and not hers is that he is an adult and she is a child. Seems obvious. By the way, the only thing that matters is the individuals' ages. It doesn't matter that he thought she was older, that she told him she was older, that she showed him a fake I.D., or even that she told him she attended the local university.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Law Office of Michael Brodsky
    Law Office of Michael Brodsky | Michael Brodsky
    For better or worse, the gender of the actors is irrelevant in what is commonly known as "statutory rape" i.e. sexual intercourse with a person too immature to rationally or legally consent to the act (remember *Mary Kay LeTourneau?)*. So that fact that he is male and she is female should not be an issue, although I would acknowledge that men are probably more likely to be charged. That said, her misrepresentations about her age could be a defense:* (2) In any prosecution under this chapter in which the offense or degree of the offense depends on the victim's age, it is no defense that the perpetrator did not know the victim's age, or that the perpetrator believed the victim to be older, as the case may be: PROVIDED, That it is a defense which the defendant must prove by a preponderance of the evidence that at the time of the offense the defendant reasonably believed the alleged victim to be the age identified in subsection (3) of this section based upon declarations as to age by the alleged victim.Rev. Code Wash. (ARCW) 9A.44.030 *. Bottom line, he needs a really good attorney because the consequences of a conviction of Rape of a Child in the 3rd Degree or Child Molestation in the 3rd Degree are severe and long lasting.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Law Office of Daniel K Martin
    Law Office of Daniel K Martin | Daniel K Martin
    California punishes sex with a minor even if both people are minors, many people are surprised to learn that. I mention that fact because of your comment about 'suddenly it is the boy's fault.' Because usually what happens is a girl and her boyfriend go into the doctor and find out that she is pregnant, both are underage. The boy is the only one that gets charged. This situation is a little different, and there is good news for your friend. If he honestly believed that she was 18 years old, then he has a defense to this charge. The first thing that needs to happen is he needs to contact a criminal defense lawyer to discuss this case. If he is hired, the defense attorney will help him mount a defense based on his good faith believe that she was 18 years old.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    He is screwed. It's statutory rape. Whether she tells him his age is irrelevant. And you are wrong about the male always being screwed. There are tons of cases where the female is the older one and gets convicted of the felony.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Law Office of Jared Altman
    Law Office of Jared Altman | Jared Altman
    If she is underage then he is in big trouble.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 6/19/2013
    Mark Thiessen, Attorney at Law
    Mark Thiessen, Attorney at Law | Mark Thiessen
    It's statutory rape and VERY serious. You need to hire the best lawyer you can afford. Ignorance of age is not a defense. Although we can show how he tricked her. You are in for a big nasty fight, so prepare accordingly.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Law Office of Rankin Johnson IV, LLC
    Law Office of Rankin Johnson IV, LLC | Rankin Johnson IV
    Ignorance of the girl's age might be a defense, but it depends on the crime charged and the facts. The boy needs a lawyer immediately, and his family should take out a second mortgage or whatever they have to do to hire one. I can't answer the question about why girls and boys are treated differently, but what the boy and his family do now should be based on what the courts will actually do, not what they should do.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Beaulier Law Office
    Beaulier Law Office | Maury Beaulier
    For a criminal sexual conduct offense, a mistake of age is not a defense. As a result, being tod a false age is not a defense to the crime. There are, however, many defenses which may apply. you should consult with experienced and aggressive defense counsel.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Harden Law Offices
    Harden Law Offices | Leonard D. Harden
    Do not have son talk. Get a lawyer ASAP.
    Answer Applies to: New Hampshire
    Replied: 6/19/2013
    Gary Moore, Attorney at Law
    Gary Moore, Attorney at Law | Gary Moore
    How much older than the girl is he. A four year gap is lawful so long as the girl is not under sixteen years.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 6/19/2013
    Connell-Savela
    Connell-Savela | Jason Savela
    These cases are very serious - you need an attorney immediately do not talk to the police - do not let your son discuss the facts of this case with anyone but an attorney beware of a pre-text phone call where the girl gets the guy to discuss the facts on the telephone, admitting things that the police cannot prove if the girl is sufficiently young, then consent does not matter based on the basic facts provided, my guess is that the girl was under 15 yo, 4 or more years younger than the guy and not the spouse - this is a class 4 felony sexual assault on a child - it carries a 2-10 year prison sentence and a lifetime of supervision on probation, parole or in prison this is extraordinarily serious and you need a good lawyer immediately.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Andersen Law PLLC
    Andersen Law PLLC | Craig Andersen
    My dad always had a rule that I and my brother always had to keep our bedroom doors open when we had female visitors. That was a great idea. As my dad also said, never assume a girl is of age. Being mistaken as to the age of the girl is not a defense. If she was under 16, there is no outright defense. If the girl lied or showed him false identification that would be one thing but boys and men do not have the luxury of acting with blatant disregard of the girl's age. It is our obligation to make proper inquiry's and ascertain the true age of the girl.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Levine & McHenry LLC
    Levine & McHenry LLC | Matthew McHenry
    The law doesn't favor girls over boys, but it does favor minors over those who are over 18. Your friend's son needs to hire an attorney experienced in defending sexual crimes. Normally, lack of knowledge about a minor's age is not a defense, but there may be other defenses available.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Miller & Harrison, LLC
    Miller & Harrison, LLC | David Harrison
    Hire the best lawyer you can for this boy.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 6/19/2013
    Law Offices of Martina A. Vigil, PC
    Law Offices of Martina A. Vigil, PC | Martina A. Vigil
    Having sex with a minor is what the law considers a "strict liability" crime meaning that it is irrelevant whether the defendant was aware of the minor's age or not. This law is supposed to protect both young girls and boys.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Law Office of Maureen Furlong Baldwin
    Law Office of Maureen Furlong Baldwin | Maureen Furlong Baldwin
    If he did not know she is under 18, that is a defense. The problem you have is "they had been seeing eachother". If he picked her up at junior high, for example, or met her friends, parents, etc, more chances he knew her age. Quite possibly the girl will not want to prosecute. It is difficult to "catch" someone having sex because you need to see the sexual organs, not just movement under a blanket. Your son should not make any statements to police. Police often use facebook statements, or can make a pre-text phone call. Since this is a felony charge if he is 3 years older than her, you should consult an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Jonathan S. Willett Attorney at Law
    Jonathan S. Willett Attorney at Law | Jonathan S. Willett
    Your facts depend upon whether the girl was under 15 or under 17. If under 17, tricking or being mistaken about about her age is an issue. If she was under 15, that defense is not available.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Law Office of Charles J. Block
    Law Office of Charles J. Block | Charles J. Block
    First, did the girl say she was older than she actually was; Second, Would a reasonable person believe the girl was 16-years old.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Law Offices of Jeffery A. Cojocar, PC
    Law Offices of Jeffery A. Cojocar, PC | Jeffery A. Cojocar
    He needs an attorney right away.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 6/19/2013
    Theodore W. Robinson, P.C.
    Theodore W. Robinson, P.C. | Theodore W. Robinson
    The answer is an underage girl underthe age of 17 has no capacity under the law togive her consent to sex. You're right, the male is fully responsible and should always make abig effort todiscover her true age - because he IS responsible - even if she misleads him as to her age. It is not up to thegirl or even her parents.The law is clear about her incpacity and that's just the way it is in NY. Sorry. That's the very reason to stay away from very young girls andmake sure of their exact age. Check theirdriver's license and anything else you can to make sure of their age and even then be very careful, because just what happened here could happen to anyone. While its not fair, once you're aware of theapplicable law and you disregard it, then its on him.Hire a goodexperienced lawyer to defend him. Good luck. T
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Baner and Baner
    Baner and Baner | Jonathan Baner
    Minors are not prohibited from having sex with adults. It is the other way that is criminal. This is very much a concerning charge. Do not take it lightly.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 9/30/2011
    Laguzzi Law, P.C.
    Laguzzi Law, P.C. | Carina Laguzzi
    Unfortunately, the only defense to statutory rape is that the man did not have sex with the alleged victim.
    Answer Applies to: Pennsylvania
    Replied: 9/29/2011
    Lawrence Lewis
    Lawrence Lewis | Lawrence Lewis, PC
    The girls are always innocent until they get caught because you live in the Bible belt, where each resident regards himself as a "good" Christian, until he is caught doing the same thing the "bad" Christians are doing, then he talks about temptation, and the devil. Everyone is two-faced. Your friends' son did not know that the girl was underage. Underage meaning under 16, correct? Was the girl still in high school? Did he see what subjects she was studying? Algebra is not senior level math, it is freshman. So, here you are being two-faced also. She did not reveal her age. Did your friend's son reveal his age to the parents of the girl? Yes? No? Did your friend's son try and determine her age irrespective of what the girl may have told him? Yes? No? So, the real question is: Why does everyone in the Bible belt want to pretend that they are somehow different from the very people that they accuse of being biased and two-faced, when they are biased and two-faced.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 9/29/2011
    Klisz Law Office, PLLC
    Klisz Law Office, PLLC | Timothy J. Klisz
    It only matters if she was over 16 years of age. It doesn't matter if she lies, shows a fake ID or anything else. Simply having relations with a person under 16 is Criminal Sexual Conduct. Your friend's son needs a lawyer asap.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 9/29/2011
    Austin Legal Services, PLC
    Austin Legal Services, PLC | Jared Austin
    The age of consent in Michigan is 16 so unless she is younger than 16, there is no criminal charges provided the sex was consensual. If under 16, your son could be charged with criminal sexual conduct, which is a felony, and he could potentially face prison time and being a registered sex offender. If that is the case, he needs experienced legal representation as soon as possible. It does not matter legally whether he knew her age or not or whether he knew she was underage or not. The crime is one of "strict liability" meaning as long as the act is committed (sex with an underage person) it is irrelevant what he knew, thought he knew, or believed. That is an issue you would have to take up with your state legislatures since they are the ones who passed it.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 9/29/2011
    Michael Breczinski
    Michael Breczinski | Michael Breczinski
    The problem is that belief that the girl was older is not a defense in Michigan. The age of consent is 16. Sex with a 15 year old can carry 15 years in prison and prison is mandatory. Could the parents be charged as aiding and abetting the crime. If the girl was only 15 why would the parents let her have a boyfriend, much less an older boyfriend over until 1:30 am? He needs an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 9/29/2011
    Stevens Law Office, PLC
    Stevens Law Office, PLC | Ryan Stevens
    There could be serious factual and legal deficiencies in the prosecution's case. Please have your friend's son consult with a criminal defense attorney immediately. The charges are likely to be very serious and need immediate attention.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 9/29/2011
    Vermeulen Law office P.A.
    Vermeulen Law office P.A. | Cynthia J.Vermeulen
    In general, the law places the burden on the male to ascertain the age of the female in the relationship. The criminal charges under these circumstances are felonies, which could result in criminal convictions, prison or jail time, registering as a sexual offender, completing a sex offender treatment program, payment of fines and fees, no contact orders, being prohibited from use of internet, being prohibited from contact with children under age 18, and other burdensome consequences. This means that it is important to immediately seek experienced legal representation, including before making a statement to law enforcement.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 9/29/2011
    Meshbesher & Spence
    Meshbesher & Spence | Daniel Guerrero
    He may have a defense if he honestly and mistakenly believed she was older than she actually is. He should get a good lawyer to defend him.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 9/29/2011
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