Statutory rape is when any person engages in sexual intercourse with a person under the age of 18. More commonly, statutory rape is referred to as unlawful sex with a minor.
In California, a person can be convicted of unlawful sexual intercourse when a person has sexual intercourse with a minor when the two are not married. The activity can be what is commonly seen as consensual – possibly in a loving relationship and without any kind of duress – but because the minor is not able to give legal consent to engage in intercourse, the person is exposed to a criminal charge. It is the age of the parties involved in the act, it is not a question of force or duress.
In California, statutory rape is a “wobbler,” meaning that the offense may be charged as either a misdemeanor or felony depending on the circumstances surrounding the act. There are three specific circumstances that determine how an offense will be charged: 1) an offense is a misdemeanor if the offender is no more than three years older than the alleged victim, 2) an offense may be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony if the offender is more than three years older than the alleged victim, and 3) an offense may be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony if the offender is 21 years of age of older and the alleged victim is under 16 years of age. Whether an offense is charged as a misdemeanor or as a felony can depend on the offender’s criminal record.
When facing criminal charges, hiring the right lawyer is one of the most important things you can do.An effective defense can protect an offender against a statutory rape charge.
The experienced criminal lawyers at Boxer McLaughlin, APC can find a way to maximize our client’s outcome – from negotiating a favorable settlement to winning at trial.
With decades of criminal defense experience the attorneys at Boxer McLaughlin, APC know how to achieve success for our clients.
As experienced criminal defense attorneys we know how best to defend our clients against the government.
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