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In the state of New York, the legal age of consent is 17 years old. If you’re accused of statutory rape, we encourage you to contact our law firm to get a risk free consultation on how we can help you. It’s common for the parents of a minor to bring forth statutory rape charges on behalf of a child. If the parents do not move forward with the charges, it’s common for the state to do so. The charge of statutory rape will be valid, even if the minor did consent to the sex. This is a serious crime, and can bring serious penalties if convicted. Remember – the charges are valid even if the minor consented. Penalties can include jail time, financial fines, and you have to register as a sex offender. More over, you will be accused of a sex crime – and carry that social stigma for the rest of your life – which will damage your reputation.
NY Penal Law section 130.25, 130.30, and 130.35, are used to define statutory rape. The crime is defined as having consensual sex with a minor under the age of 17 years old. The crime is difficult to prove because it’s hard to prove it’s consensual. Consent is hard to prove in rape crimes, and can be hard to defend as well. In some cases, consent is given – but the victim changes his/her mind later – and it can be all difficult to prove. The victim can claim they were raped out of sheer embarrassment. The prosecutors will try to prove that rape occurred beyond a reasonable doubt. You need a skilled attorney at our law firm in order to raise reasonable doubt, and help prove you didn’t do what you’re accused of doing.
There are three degrees of statutory rape you need to be aware of.
Statutory Rape 1st degree: Intercourse with a minor 11 years or younger, or with a minor under 13 – when the defendant is 18 years or older. The crime is considered a B felony, and is punishable by up to 25 years in jail
Statutory Rape 2nd degree: Intercourse with a person under 15 years of age, when defendant is over 18 years age. If the defendant is less than 4 years older than the person who was raped, it can be a defense to the crime. It is considered a D felony – and is punishable by up to 7 years in prison.
Statutory Rape 3rd degree: This is defined as having intercourse with a victim less than 17 years of age, when the defendant is 21 years or older. This is considered a class E felony, and is punishable by up to 4 years in jail.
In addition to the penalties mentioned above, you will have to register as a sex offender in the Sex Offender Registration Act. This is required under state and federal guidelines. Under the guidelines there are 3 levels of risks. Level 3 is considered the most serious. SORA was designed to allow the government to keep track of sex offenders. In some states, sex offenders have other restrictions placed on them as well, in addition to limitations on housing. In some states, sex offenders can’t live near schools, can’t be left alone with minors, and can be prohibited from using the internet.
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