Legal dating age in texas

Aggravated sexual assault is a first degree felony.

The minimum prison sentence may be twenty-five years in the event that the victim is younger than 6 years of age when the crime was committed or if the victim was younger than 14 years of age and either a deadly weapon was used or exhibited, the child was seriously hurt, the defendant attempted to kill the child, or the defendant used drugs to facilitate the crime.

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This includes the defendant being a health care services provider, clergyman, public servant, or an employee of a facility where the victim resides.

This charge may be elevated to that of aggravated sexual assault if any of the following occur during the commission of the sexual assault: See Sexual Assault Defenses for more general information.

Thus, the minor cannot “consent” even if they wanted to. Charges will be brought regardless of whether the minor sending them consented.

Sexual conduct includes, but not limited to, lewd exhibition of the genitals, masturbation, and any depiction of a female’s breast exposing the nipple. In the context of “sexting” a minor is a person younger than 18 years of age. Even if the minor purposefully sends a picture and consented to another minor viewing it, it is still a crime. In sum, there is essentially no consent decision involving sexual photographs or videos of a child under the age of 18.

Meaning even if the person in-fact consents, because the person is younger than 17 the person’s consent is not effective.

This is sometimes called the statutory rape statute because by statute an individual who is under the age of 17 is legally incapable of giving consent. “Child” in the statute is defined as an individual younger than 17 years in age. Statutory rape is a strict liability offense, which means that it does not matter if the sexual intercourse was consensual or that the offender reasonably believed the child was older than they were.

Pursuant to Texas Penal Code § 22.011 and § 21.11, the age of consent in Texas is 17. So, it is not a defense to these charges that a minor gave actual consent.

The age of consent is the age at which an individual may legally consent to engage in sexual activity with another person. Similarly, Texas Penal Code 21.11 (Indecency with a Child) prohibits sexual conduct with a child younger than the age of 17. In Texas, once a person has turned 17, the law presumes they are able to give consent. There are other situations in which a person that is 17 or older legally cannot give consent.

Under federal law, it is illegal to cross state lines for the purposes of a sexual encounter with an individual under the age of 18.

For Indecency with a Child, it is an affirmative defense to prosecution if the person engaging in sexual conduct: (1) is not more than three years older than the minor and the opposite sex of the minor; (2) did not use force or a threat against the minor; and (3) at the time of the sexual conduct was not required to register for life as a Sex Offender under Chapter 62 of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure (Sex Offender Registration Program) and did not have a reportable conviction or adjudication for an offense under Chapter 62.

See Sexual Assault Penalties and Sentencing to learn more.

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