Texas laws on dating a minor

Consensual teenage sex is common in the United States. In fact, it is estimated that there are more than 7 million incidents of statutory rape every year.

However, it is clear that most incidents are not prosecuted and do not lead to arrests and convictions. It is generally intended to punish heinous cases of an adult taking sexual advantage of a minor.

As written, however, this law did not apply to same-sex couples, leaving them subject to higher penalties than opposite-sex couples for the same offense.

Resulting in higher statutory rape convictions, larger fines, and sex offender registration for teens in the LGBTQ community.

Because forced sexual intercourse with a minor is considered a particularly heinous form of rape, these laws relieve the prosecution of the burden to prove lack of consent.

Until the late 1970s, sex involving an adult female and an underage male was often ignored by the law, due to the belief that it is often sexual initiation for the younger male.

This may occur before either participant has reached the age of consent, or after one has but the other has not.

In the latter case, in most jurisdictions, the person who has reached the age of consent is guilty of statutory rape.

Thus, many jurisdictions prohibit allowing a juvenile to be tried as an adult under this law (most jurisdictions have separate provisions for child molestation or forcible rape which can be applied to juveniles and for which a minor can be tried as an adult).

Some jurisdictions also specify a minimum difference in age in order for the offense to be applicable.

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