Age law dating under 18
In February 2000, Matthew Limon, a boy who had been diagnosed with mild mental retardation, turned 18.A week after his birthday, he performed oral sex on another boy who was one month away from his 15th birthday.Once registered, the name of the offender appears on a list that is made available to the public. The National Sex Offender Registry (NSOPW) allows anyone to search by name or location, regardless of the state in which the crime may have occurred.Registered sex offenders are subject to certain restrictions, such as maintaining a certain distance from schools and other places where children frequent.Charges of statutory rape range from misdemeanor crimes to felonies, the penalties of which vary just as greatly.Such penalties vary by state, as well as by the specific circumstances involved.If any person engages in consensual sex prior to that age, they have committed a crime, regardless of how close in age the parties are.The following table shows the age of consent according to the law for each state.
For example: Brendan, 16, and his girlfriend Lila, 14, live and attend school in Texas.
In general, penalties for statutory rape may include fines, probation and community service, or may require imprisonment for a year or more.