Statutory Rape: When a Lie Can Ruin a Life

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Robin Barton

There's no question that forcible rape—sexual intercourse that isn't consensual— is unacceptable and should be illegal.

Statutory rape, however, is a murkier area.

Statutory rape laws make sexual intercourse involving willing partners illegal by virtue of the age of at least one of the participants. The theory is that young men and women below a certain age aren't capable of knowingly consenting to sex with a full appreciation of the impact of the act and its . . .

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