Navigation Links
Crime Victims' Institute studies adolescent sex and laws

HUNTVILLE, TX -- While statutory rape laws have been enacted to protect minors from sexual abuse by adults or peers, more teenagers are engaging in sexual activity before the legal age of consent and are facing sexual assault charges.

A recent study by the Crime Victims' Institute at Sam Houston State University examines various state laws that have been adopted to address the growing problem and suggests ways to address the dilemmas caused by the laws that are written.

"It is becoming increasingly clear that some teenagers engage in sexual activity even before they reach the legally defined age of consent," said Glen Kercher, Director of the Crime Victims' Institute. "Given the changing mores in this country and the increasing acceptance by teenagers of early sexual intimacies, more and more young people are finding themselves facing sexual assault charges, whether or not either partner feels victimized."

The report, entitled "Adolescent Sexual Behavior and the Law," provides an overview of state laws involving statutory rape and offenders who are close in age to their victims. It also refers to the model penal code, which decriminalizes sexual relationships between teenagers who are close in age when the acts are consensual and the person is no more than four years older than the minor.

While few would argue that statutory rape laws should be eliminated, cases involving consensual, close-in-age relationships continue to be processed through the courts and may result in youth being labeled as sex offenders. Decriminalizing these cases could result in saving time and expenses in criminal court, and offenses could be tied to brief educational programs and provide parents with the option of a restraining order to control their child's behavior, according to the report.

In lieu of decriminalization, judges and prosecutors should be encouraged to use education classes instead of punishment in deciding these consensual, close-in-age relationships. In addition, juveniles who meet carefully crafted criteria, even when these cases are prosecuted, should be removed from the sex offender registry because of the wide-ranging restrictions and stigma imposed.


Contact: Beth Kuhles
Sam Houston State University

Related medicine news :

1. Demographics cloud optimism on black violent crime decrease
2. New method manipulates particles for sensors, crime scene testing
3. Internet Security Problems Solved - A New Internet Security Group Defeats CyberCrime in West Virginia
4. Violent crime race gap narrows, but persists in US
5. One Month Later, Haiti Quake Survivors Report Need For Protection From Crime, Rainy Season
6. Children victims of most eye injuries from aerosols
7. Male Victims of Domestic Abuse May Show Signs of PTSD
8. Years Later, Victims of Critical Respiratory Illness Still Suffer
9. Elderly victims of abuse often use alcohol or drugs, study says
10. 3 in 4 domestic violence victims go unidentified in emergency rooms, Penn study shows
11. Hope for stroke victims
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... Cancer patients, ... and experiences at a live taping of the next CURE Connections® ... of Gastrointestinal Cancers 2015 Symposium at Georgetown University Hotel & Conference Center in ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... American Family Care (AFC), the nation’s ... a holiday pop-up clinic located in Metro Atlanta’s North Point Mall. The clinic is ... different way. The location is scheduled to operate through Dec. 24. , Holiday Pop-Up ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... 24, 2015 , ... With Thanksgiving right around the corner, holiday travel season ... protect your family and vehicle. , According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, ... is sharing the following safety tips from the NHTSA: , ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... ... , LLC launched their Pro Vest, the latest version of their widely popular weight loss ... 10 hours. , The campaign, which will continue to run through Saturday, ... , The PRO Vest provides consumers with a less expensive, one-size fits all comfort option, ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... Chiropractic student Katie ... (CU-KC), in Overland Park, Kansas. Benson, a fifth-trimester student in the university’s ... Cleveland III on October 16. , “Katie is very excited and greatly appreciative ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)... 24. November 2015 Avery Biomedical ... Systems, ist erfreut, die Berufung von Anders ... geben zu können. ... --> Foto -   ... Von 1984-1986 war er Fellow des Cardiovascular ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... India , November 24, 2015 ... market research report "Spine Biologics Market by Product Type (Bone ... (Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion, Posterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion), End ... MarketsandMarkets, the global market was valued at $1.90 Billion in ... at a CAGR of 4.4% during the forecast period of ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... Nov. 24, 2015 Avery Biomedical Devices (ABD), ... to announce the appointment of Anders Jonzon , ... Dr. Jonzon is a ... Children,s Hospital, Uppsala University, Uppsala and Children,s Hospital, Karolinska, ... was a fellow at the Cardiovascular Institute (UCSF). His ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: