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

Polanski infamously pleaded guilty to a statutory rape charge in California in 1978 but fled the country before sentencing and remains a fugitive from American justice. Scott Roxborough, The Hollywood Reporter, ""Completely Tone Deaf": How Venice Became the F-You Film Festival," 23 Aug. 2019 In a plea agreement Friday, Sumner pleaded guilty to one count of victim tampering and two counts of statutory rape and faces a seven-year prison term when she is sentenced, reports the Post-Dispatch. Jeff Truesdell,, "Ex-School Nurse Admits to Sex With Teen After Trying to Bribe Him With $2,000 Car Payment," 12 Aug. 2019 In 1997, Dershowitz argued against statutory rape laws, saying the age of consent should be 15, Bruck reports. Anna North, Vox, "Alan Dershowitz helped sex offender Jeffrey Epstein get a plea deal. Now he’s tweeting about age of consent laws.," 30 July 2019 There was no statutory rape law to penalize what occurred in the studio, and had such law existed, a poor black girl would have fallen outside its reach. Longreads, "A Minor Figure," 20 July 2019 In 2008, Kelly was acquitted of child pornography charges associated with a video of the singer allegedly committing statutory rape with a girl prosecutors claimed to be as young as 13. Tiffany Diane Tso,, "R. Kelly Arrested On Federal Child Pornography Charges," 13 July 2019 The disgraced film director was ousted by the AMPAS Board of Governors after fleeing the United States following his guilty plea to a charge of statutory rape in 1977. Matt Mcnulty,, "Roman Polanski Returns to Spotlight After Being Ousted from Academy for Rape Conviction," 25 July 2019 The explicit series makes no bones about pushing the envelope, and in the pilot, which premiered Sunday night, Dane’s character courted controversy by committing statutory rape with a 17-year-old trans girl, Jules (newcomer Hunter Schafer, 20). Maureen Lee Lenker,, "Eric Dane talks filming that 'intense' full-frontal scene in Euphoria," 17 June 2019 The 33-year-old Republic, MO, man raped a woman one month into his probation for a previous statutory rape sentence. Tiffany Diane Tso,, "Man Who Sexually Abused An 11-Year-Old Girl Gets 5 Years Probation," 20 June 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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Statistics for statutory rape

Last Updated

13 Sep 2019

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The first known use of statutory rape was in 1873

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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 degree unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor, and criminal sexual conduct in the second degree.

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authorized for issue (as a bond)

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