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Reeder & Brown, P.C.

IL defense lawyerStatutory rape is a common term used for behavior that meets the technical definition of criminal sexual abuse in Illinois. The legal age of consent for sexual activity of any kind is 17 years old. Anyone younger than that cannot legally consent to sex, even if the minor voluntarily engaged in the act and even if the minor’s sexual partner is also under 17 years old. Contrary to how “consent” is often used in common parlance, for legal purposes, someone simply cannot legally consent to sexual activity in Illinois under age 17.

This can cause some confusion for individuals who are caught engaging in sexual activity with their underage boyfriend or girlfriend. Despite what may seem like enthusiastic participation from both parties, such behavior is illegal and can carry serious criminal penalties. If you are being investigated for or have been charged with criminal sexual abuse, get an experienced Illinois criminal defense attorney right away.

Can I Be Charged with a Sex Crime for Having Sex with My Underage Girlfriend?

Although minors under age 17 are rarely prosecuted for engaging in sexual acts together, Illinois law does prohibit such behavior. Neither partner is capable of legally consenting, and both partners could be charged with a sex crime.

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