statutory rape


Definition of statutory rape

: sexual intercourse with a person who is below the statutory age of consent

Examples of statutory rape in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Roosie was charged with statutory rape but acquitted of that charge as well as a subsequent perjury charge. New York Times, "‘Pelosi,’ by Molly Ball: An Excerpt," 5 May 2020 The French-Polish director is still wanted in the U.S. for the statutory rape of a minor but has benefited from France’s general complacency toward male artists and the commitment to separating the art from the artist. Ibtissem Guenfoud, ABC News, "French 'Oscars' Academy board resigns amid gender controversies," 14 Feb. 2020 And with Hankins facing another charge of statutory rape in a different county, there was no immediate concern of him walking away free, authorities said. David K. Li, NBC News, "Placenta seized from abortion clinic was evidence but rape charge dropped," 30 Jan. 2020 Polanski pled guilty to the statutory rape of a 13-year-old-girl in 1977 as part of a plea bargain to avoid more serious charges and served 42 days in jail. Rhonda Richford, The Hollywood Reporter, "Rosanna Arquette, Andrea Bescond Call on European Film Awards to Pull Roman Polanski's Nominations," 2 Dec. 2019 In many instances these loopholes are used for the older partner to avoid statutory rape charges. Elaisha Stokes, CBS News, "Campaign to end child marriage in the U.S. runs into some surprising opposition," 31 Oct. 2019 Boyle, who was charged with one count of statutory rape, has been on administrative leave since the alleged abuse was discovered. Christine Pelisek,, "High School Psychologist Charged With Having Sex With Student in Classroom: 'Betrayal of Trust'," 25 Sep. 2019 The scene, which depicts statutory rape and full-frontal nudity, is just one of the many uncomfortable moments featuring teen characters in the new drama, airing Sundays (10 EDT/PDT). Patrick Ryan, USA TODAY, "Are YA shows too explicit? 'Euphoria' director defends depictions of graphic teen sex," 20 June 2019 To prove most crimes, prosecutors must show the defendant committed a proscribed act and did so with a guilty mind—ill intent—with the exception of a very few strict liability offenses, like statutory rape. Ephrat Livni, Quartz, "Why Trump’s “state of mind” will be key in impeachment," 2 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'statutory rape.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of statutory rape

1873, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for statutory rape

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The first known use of statutory rape was in 1873

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Statistics for statutory rape

Last Updated

6 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Statutory rape.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for statutory rape

statutory rape


English Language Learners Definition of statutory rape

law : the crime of having sex with someone who is younger than an age that is specified by law

statutory rape

stat·​u·​to·​ry rape | \ ˌstach-ə-ˌtōr-ē- How to pronounce statutory rape (audio) \

Medical Definition of statutory rape

: sexual intercourse with a person who is below the age of consent as defined by law

statutory rape


Legal Definition of statutory rape

: rape consisting of sexual intercourse with a person beneath an age (as 14 years) specified by statute

Note: Many state statutes also specify a minimum age of the perpetrator or an age differential (as at least four years) between the perpetrator and the victim. Consent of the victim and belief that the victim is of the age of consent are usually considered immaterial. Statutory rape is now codified under various names, such as rape in the second degree rape in the third degreeunlawful sexual intercourse with a minor, and criminal sexual conduct in the second degree.

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