Ages of consent in the United States

The Texas Age of Consent is 17 years old. In the United States, the age of consent is the minimum age at which an individual is considered legally old enough to consent to participation in sexual activity. Individuals aged 16 or younger in Texas are not legally able to consent to sexual activity, and such activity may result in prosecution for statutory rape. Texas statutory rape law is violated when a person has consensual sexual intercourse with an individual under age While there is no close in age exemption, defenses exist when the offender was no more than 3 years older then the victim and of the opposite sex. Texas does not have a close-in-age exemption. Close in age exemptions , commonly known as “Romeo and Juliet laws”, are put in place to prevent the prosecution of individuals who engage in consensual sexual activity when both participants are significantly close in age to each other, and one or both partners are below the age of consent. Because there is no such “Romeo and Juliet law” in Texas, it is possible for two individuals both under the age of 17 who willingly engage in intercourse to both be prosecuted for statutory rape , although this is rare.

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When Shakespeare brought Romeo and Juliet to life, he was intentional in choosing two young characters as his protagonists. Then as now, two teenagers having consensual sex is perfectly understandable. On the other hand, an adult molesting a child is reprehensible. The difference between the two situations would seem obvious. An older teen who has sex with his younger girlfriend can be arrested, prosecuted, and jailed for the act.

this information is up-to-date. By providing this information, we A legal proceeding that allows a minor to get an abortion without the consent of a parent or The laws concerning runaway or missing children in Texas are confusing and often.

Statutory rape is a crime that occurs a person has consensual sex with someone under the age of consent. Statutory rape is a strict liability crime, meaning that the intention of the parties is not considered and as such mistake of age is usually not allowed as a defense. The age of consent varies from state to state. In Texas , it is considered statutory rape to have sex with someone under the age of However, there is a close-in-age exception that allows a person to have sex with someone under 17 as long as the older person is not more than three years older than the minor.

This exception does not apply to people who have to register as sex offenders or to couples of the same sex. If you have sex with someone under 17 who you are not married to, you might be charged with statutory rape. If you do not fall under the close-in-age exception, a conviction for statutory rape called “indecency with a child” in Texas can result in a prison sentence ranging from 2 to 20 years. If you have sex with someone under 14 then the crime can be considered aggravated sexual assault and has a prison sentence that can range from a minimum of 5 years to a maximum sentence of life in prison.

If you have been accused of statutory rape you should speak with a lawyer immediately. An experienced criminal defense attorney will be able to advise you of your rights, help you build a defense, and advise you as to what your options may be. In a recent case of statutory rape in Sugarland, a Houston area defense lawyer was successful in getting a client alternative sentencing and possible future expungement. Ken joined LegalMatch in January

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Like some other states, Texas has enacted this law to protect teenagers who are close in age from facing sex crime charges and convictions when they have consensual sex, even when one or both teens are below the legal age of consent which, in Texas, is Romeo and Juliet law also protects these teens from having to register as sex offenders. Therefore, what might be considered statutory rape from one standpoint is instead considered legal given the nature of Texas’ Romeo and Juliet law.

The law is so named after the fictional young lovers in the classic William Shakespeare play “Romeo and Juliet. The moral behind the law is that teens who are close in age and have consensual sexual relations should be protected from prosecution and being ostracized from society as if they were child sex offenders. Such punishments are considered unnecessarily harsh given their circumstances.

Dating violence is when an abuser commits an act that is: intended to result in physical harm, bodily injury (physical pain, illness, or damage to.

In Texas, the legal age of consent for sex is 17 years old. This law applies equally to males and females, and to heterosexuals as well as homosexuals. It means a person age 17 or older has the legal right to consent to sexual activity. Under Texas sexual offenses law, this act is considered aggravated sexual assault. When teens are involved, one Texas sex crime law allows for small differences in the age of the persons having sexual activity. This is known as Romeo and Juliet laws.

Named after the young lovers in the classic Shakespeare romantic drama Romeo and Juliet , this law is designed to protect teens who are close in age from facing sex crime charges and convictions after having consensual sex, even if one or both teens are under the age of The same law also can protect such teens from having to register as a sex crime offender. If someone younger than 17 years old has sex with a person who is no more than three years older, and no threat or force was applied, then a sex crime charge against the older person may be reduced or even dropped.

In Texas, it’s Legal to Have Sex With a 17-Year-Old, Just Don’t Take a Picture

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Waive/choose not to waive confidentiality at a rape crisis center? Apply for a protective order to protect you from sexual assault, dating violence, or stalking.

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Child Pornography

WomensLaw is not just for women. We serve and support all survivors, no matter their sex or gender. Important: Even if courts are closed, you can still file for a protection order and other emergency relief.

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If you are accused of the possession child pornography under either state or federal law, it is important to recognize the seriousness of the charges. Seek out the advice of an experienced criminal defense attorney before making any statements to any law enforcement officer. Matt Horak defends people facing charges of possessing, distributing or producing explicit materials involving minors.

If you face these serious charges, contact an experienced Houston child pornography lawyer. Call Horak Law at or toll-free at to set up a consultation. Each count of child pornography is generally charged as a third-degree felony. The penalties for a third-degree felony are a sentencing range of two to ten-year range as set out in section See Tex.

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What is Texas’ Romeo and Juliet Law and How Does It Work?

Category: Sex Crimes. More than 49 million in the U. The FBI warns that sexual predators, scam artists, and gigolos stalk online dating service looking for potential victims.

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Texas Sexual Assault Law

In the United States, age of consent laws regarding sexual activity are made at the state level. There are several federal statutes related to protecting minors from sexual predators, but laws regarding specific age requirements for sexual consent are left to individual states , District of Columbia , and territories. Depending on the jurisdiction, the legal age of consent is between 16 and In some places, civil and criminal laws within the same state conflict with each other.

Different jurisdictions express these definitions differently, like Argentina, may say the age of consent is 18, but an exception is made down to 13 years of age, if the older partner is not in a position of authority over the younger one. The data below reflects what each jurisdiction’s legislation actually means, rather than what it states on the surface.

States that terminate or restrict parental rights if the child was conceived as a result of for those states that have a law permitting mothers of children conceived apply if subsequent to the date of the sexual assault, the child’s natural parent and against the father of the child pursuant to chapter 5, part 1 of this title. Texas.

Information on the ages used historically in western age of consent laws is not readily available. This table has been compiled from a combination of historical and contemporary sources. By , the first date chosen, many western nations had established an age of consent for the first time, typically of 12 or 13 years. By , when the influence of reform campaigns that established a new link between the age of consent and prostitution had run its course, most had revised their age upward, to 14 or 15 in European nations, and 16 in the Anglo-American world.

In the last decades of the 20th century, states and nations with ages below those averages amended their laws to move closer to them. In Europe that growing conformity owed much to moves toward greater European integration. Given that the rationale for the age of consent has remained essentially unchanged in its emphasis on the need to protect ‘immature’ children, the table highlights the shifting and various definitions of childhood employed across time and cultures.

Date compiled from the following sources: Hirschfeld, Magnus. The Homosexuality of Men and Women. Translated by Michael Lombardi-Nash. Advanced Search. Sex with a minor. Don’t go there. Request permissions beyond the scope of this license here.

What’s the Romeo and Juliet Law? Jaime Halscott Criminal Defense Attorney