Age of Consent in Michigan: Romeo and Juliet Law Michigan
Michigan sex laws. To not run afoul of the statutory rape Michigan law, it is critical to review the Michigan “consent” laws. Every state enacts its own rape laws relating to the age at which a female can acquiesce to having sexual relations. Making the mistake of engaging in sexual intercourse can make that older person a sex offender
Michigan age laws. In various aspects of our lives, the Legislative branch of government has enacted laws that are meant to protect young people. An example of this is for laws controlling when teenagers can marry in the Great Lakes State, as well as when they can consume alcoholic beverages.
Michigan statutory rape laws. In Michigan, the statutory rape law is denominated “third degree sexual conduct.” Any person under age 16 cannot consent to have sex. Thus, the burden is on the other person to positively determine a sex participant’s actual age.
What Is the Legal Sex Age in Michigan?
The so-called “Romeo and Juliet” laws (in each state) were developed to prevent felony punishment, or to lessen the severity of the crime, if a young adult (who is near the same age as the younger person) engages in consensual sexual activity with a minor.
In some states, their Romeo and Juliet laws might prevent a 17-year-old or an 18-year-old from being prosecuted for the serious felony crime of statutory rape for having consensual sex with a 15-year-old. Most states will still prosecute for a misdemeanor crime, but those statutes often do not carry mandatory sex offender registration and reporting. Thus, if a 16-year-old female has sex with a male aged 14, this crime (in many states) would be treated as a misdemeanor.
Is the age of majority in Michigan the same as the age of consent? No, it is not. The MI age of majority is 18 years old. This is technically the legal adult age in Michigan but is not the same as the Michigan age of consent 2021, when it comes to consenting to sex.
Minor consent laws Michigan. In Michigan, the minimum age of consent is 16. This is the age by which a person can consensually engage in intercourse, at the age of 16. If even one day short of that 16th birthday, the young participant is incapable of consent.
Legal age Michigan. The legal age of consent in Michigan is age 16. Across the USA, the “16 age number” is the most commonly use number.
Another law in place in the State of Michigan is what is called “engaging in sexual penetration of a person below the age of thirteen (13).” This crime can bring a harsh state prison sentence of twenty-five years.
This statute does not require proof of penetration with a sexual organ, either. The perpetrator’s hand touching the vagina or penis (even when clothing is covering the genitals) is enough to support a conviction for felony criminal sexual activity.
What is Michigan’s Age of Consent?
To understand Michigan’s Romeo and Juliet law, a basic understanding of Michigan age of consent law is helpful. The age at which a person can legally consent to sexual activity in Michigan is 16 years old. This means that anyone under the age of 16 does not have the legal capacity to consent to sexual activity.
What is the statute of limitations on statutory rape in Michigan? It does not ever expire. So, this crime has no statute of limitations whereby the time for a Prosecutor to raise such criminal charges “expires.”
The age of consent is different when there is an authority figure involved. In these cases, the age of consent is 18. For example, if a teacher is involved in a sexual relationship with a student, the age of consent in this situation is 18, not 16. If you’re not sure what the age of consent is in your scenario, a Michigan Sex Crimes Lawyer at the Barone Defense Firm can help you determine the age of consent.
How Does Michigan’s Romeo and Juliet Law Work?
Can an 18-year-old date a 16-year-old? Yes, that will work. However, if the younger person is not yet age 16, a huge legal risk exists. Only by discussing the facts (in confidence) with lawyers near me can you know how to proceed, or NOT proceed.
Michigan’s Romeo and Juliet law is codified in Michigan Complied Laws 750.520e(a). This law says that if someone is under 16 years old and engages in sexual contact with someone four years older or less, it is not a crime. The key parts of this law are that the older participant can’t be more than four (4) years older and the word “contact.” Essentially, this means that traditional sexual intercourse (penetration) is not allowed under this law.
Unfortunately, this news report discusses a sad, recent example of the Romeo and Juliet law not being applicable. When sexual contact began, the female was age 18 and the male was 15 years old. The relationship led to a pregnancy, which then resulted in criminal sexual conduct charges against the female.
Even though the two participants had an age gap of less than 4 years, and she was older than the victim, the Romeo and Juliet law did not apply because the relationship involved sexual penetration. Under Michigan’s laws, this is a form of sexual abuse.
If Being Investigated, Only Your Name and Address are Required
Usually, police will arrive unannounced and “surprise” a suspect in sex cases like this. Many times, a detective or police officer will start the conversation in a non-confrontational manner.
The news story (shown above) indicates that this is how that woman was approached. Your best bet is to remain silent and request a sex crimes attorney near me. Call today for immediate attention to this high-risk situation.
Contact us 24 hours a day at our criminal defense law firm’s easy to remember toll-free number, 1-877-ALL-MICH or 877-255-6424, for a free criminal case review.
Plus, your legal advocate will apprise you about not discussing the case with anyone except a license Michigan attorney, since no one else has that attorney-client relationship. If you are dealing with this situation, the experienced criminal defense attorneys near me at the Barone Defense Firm can help.
When you do seek legal counsel, you will need an experienced Michigan Sex Crimes Lawyer with extensive expertise in criminal sexual conduct cases. Let that legal professional take over all communications with law enforcement.