As defined by Lubbock law, statutory rape is when two people participate in a sexual act and one of the two individuals does not have the legal ability to consent based on their age. Depending on their ages, the age gap for the inability to consent to a sexual act or touching is three years. The law considers the support of the younger individual and their family as a mitigating factor. It may be beneficial to contact an experienced sex crimes attorney to help build your case. A Lubbock statutory rape lawyer will have the local knowledge and connections to help you navigate the appropriate evidence for trial.

It can get more complex when the younger party actually consents. Often when the younger party is on the defendant’s side and sometimes the family of the younger party is on the defendant’s side as well, which can be really helpful, the harder thing is that the law considers this more of a mitigating factor, it is not really a defense to the fact that the defendant actually did commit an offense under the law.

Recognition of Romeo and Juliet Laws

Romeo and Juliet rules state that if two young teenagers are within three years of each other are consenting to sexual acts or touching, that is an acceptable form of consent. However, if they are more than three years apart then the younger party is deemed not to be able to consent and that is when the older party can be held strictly liable for the touching even when the younger party consented to it.

Role of Third-Party Allegations

A third party can raise the flag and raise the allegation and if the police investigate it and they find that there is some truth to that allegation then they can bring a charge of a sex offense against the defendant even when the younger party is consenting to it. What it means is that if somebody is unhappy, they can get the bar rolling on a criminal charge even if the two actual people involved in the touching and do not want a crime prosecuted. A Lubbock statutory rape lawyer can help mitigate similar charges an individual may be facing.

Penalties Following a Conviction

A person will be facing the same penalty as somebody who is not charged with a statutory rape but is a rape in which the party was not consenting. A person’s penalties are the same, they are looking at prison time, possibly up to 20 years, and in aggravated cases, it could be more time or they could be looking at probation.

In a statutory rape case, if the one party actually consents then they are more likely to get probation but even if they get probation, they may still be a convicted sex offender with the all the same burdens onward. A person may have to register as a sex offender for the rest of their life.

Help from a Lawyer

An individual should look for a Lubbock statutory rape lawyer in the local court system and who is experienced in sex cases. A lot of it is mitigation and if a person has the alleged victim on their side and the victim’s family on their side then that can be really important and influential to a prosecutor. It has prevented the prosecutor from actually indicating a case or the case can actually convince the prosecutor to give a very low punishment. However, it is not a popular strategy for statutory rape cases.