Sex with Others in Ohio

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By Jessica Gillespie. In Ohio, it is illegal for an adult someone 18 or older to have sex with a minor someone younger than 16even if the sex is consensual. Those who break the law have committed statutory rape. Statutory rape laws are premised on the assumption that minors are incapable of giving informed consent to sexual activities.

Their incapacity is written into the statute—hence the term, "statutory" rape. The age of consent can vary among states, and some states differentiate between consensual sex between minors who are close in age for example, two teenagers of the same ageas opposed to sex between a minor and a much older adult. Though statutory rape does not require that the prosecutor prove an assault, it is still rape. Of course, rape that does involve force or an assault is illegal in Ohio and prosecuted as forcible rape. Assaults of a sexual nature may also be charged under the state's assault and battery or child enticement laws.

Statutory rape is prosecuted under Ohio's rape and sex crime laws. Penalties depend on the ages of the defendant and victim, and the conduct that occurred, as described below.

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Rape includes sexual conduct genital, oral, or anal sex, or penetration with an object or body part, however slight with a minor who is younger than Ohio Rev. Code Ann. Unlawful sexual conduct with a minor includes sexual conduct between a minor who is 13, 14, or 15, and a defendant who is 18 or older.

Gross sexual imposition includes sexual contact sexual touching, without penetration, for the purpose of arousing or gratifying sexual desires with a minor who is younger than State law requires that, in addition to the applicable fines and prison time, people convicted of certain sexual crimes including some instances of statutory rape must register as sex offenders. Defendants charged with statutory rape have the usual defenses available to all criminal defendants, such as "Someone else committed this crime," or "The alleged conduct did not occur.

Ohio has a marital exemption for statutory rape that allows consensual sex between married minors and their adult spouses even though their ages would prohibit it if they were not married. The marital defense is a remnant of the marital rape exemption.

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Minors are legally incapable of giving consent to having sex; so for example, if Jen, a year-old willingly has sex with Tony, her year-old boyfriend, Tony can be charged with rape, since Jen is not legally capable of giving consent in the first place. But if Jen and Tony are married and living in Ohio, Tony need not fear criminal charges for having consensual sex with Jen.

This is because Ohio has a marital exemption to the state's statutory rape laws. However, if Tony were to rape Jen force her to have sex against her willhe would have no protection under the law even if the two are married. Named after Shakespeare's young lovers, "Romeo and Juliet" exceptions are intended to prevent serious criminal charges against teenagers who engage in consensual sex with others close to their own age. In Ohio, there is a Romeo and Juliet exemption for consensual sex between two minors who are at least 13 but younger than And as mentioned above, the crime of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor carries reduced penalties when the victim is at least 13 but younger than 16 and the defendant is 18 or older Sex with Others in Ohio fewer than four years older than the minor.

However, a conviction may nonetheless result in a fine, jail time, or both. Defendants accused of statutory rape often claim that they had no reason to know that their partner was underage. They may argue that the victim herself represented that she was older than she was, and that a reasonable person would have believed her. But even if this is true, a defendant cannot rely on a mistake of age —even a reasonable one—to avoid conviction in Ohio. If you are facing a statutory rape charge, consider consulting with an experienced criminal defense attorney who regularly practices in your area.

The law can change at any time, and a lawyer can evaluate the strength of the prosecution's case against you and help develop any defenses that might apply to your case.

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A lawyer can often negotiate with the prosecutor for a lesser charge or a reduction in penalties such as, for example, probation instead of prison time and will know how prosecutors and judges typically handle cases like yours. The information provided on this site is not legal advice, does not constitute a lawyer referral service, and no attorney-client or confidential relationship is or will be formed by use of the site. The attorney listings on this site are paid attorney advertising. In some states, the information on this website may be considered a lawyer referral service. Please reference the Terms of Use and the Supplemental Terms for specific information related to your state.

Market Your Law Firm. Lawyer Directory. Call us at 1 Issue: search. Ohio Statutory Rape Laws. Statutes governing Ohio's age of consent, associated criminal charges, available defenses, and penalties for conviction. Getting Legal Guidance The information in this article provides an overview of the law relating to statutory rape.

If you are trying to determine the legality of any kind of conduct, make sure to consult an experienced criminal defense attorney. The law is complex and changes regularly. Sex Offender Registration State law requires that, in addition to the applicable fines and prison time, people convicted of certain sexual crimes including some instances of statutory rape must register as sex offenders.

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Defenses to a Statutory Rape Charge in Ohio Defendants charged with statutory rape have the usual defenses available to all criminal defendants, such as "Someone else committed this crime," or "The alleged conduct did not occur. Marriage Ohio has a marital exemption for statutory rape that allows consensual sex between married minors and their adult spouses even though their ages would prohibit it if they were not married. When Both Parties Are Minors: The "Romeo and Juliet" Exception Named after Shakespeare's young lovers, "Romeo and Juliet" exceptions are intended to prevent serious criminal charges against teenagers who engage in consensual sex with others close to their own age.

Mistake of Age Defendants accused of statutory rape often claim that they had no reason to know that their partner was underage.

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See a Lawyer If you are facing a statutory rape charge, consider consulting with an experienced criminal defense attorney who regularly practices in your area. Updated October 18, Talk to a Lawyer Need a lawyer? Start here.

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Sex with Others in Ohio

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