Statutory rape is when a person is over 18 years of age, has any type of sexual activity with another that is under 18 years of age, also considered to be a minor, even though the sex could be consensual. Moreover, force is not a requirement if someone is convicted of statutory rape, merely the sexual activity will be considered as statutory rape. Also, it should be noted that the offender does not require being above the age of 18, if he/she is three years older or is below three years older than the victim, then it is also considered to be statutory rape. It is forbidden for a minor to be involved in any type of sexual activity with a person that is 18 years of age or older due to the fact that he/she does not have the judgment and/or maturity needed to make the right decisions concerning any sexual activity. A class one misdemeanor is issued upon an offender if he/she is older than 18 years of age and has any type of sexual activity with a minor between the ages of 15 and 17.
Any type of sexual activity of a minor, between the ages of 13 and 15, and an offender of any age, is considered to be carnal knowledge of a child between the ages of 13 and 15. There are many different penalties issued upon the offender depending on his/her age, if he/she is older than 18, if he/she is younger than 18, considered to also be a minor, but is more than three years older than the victim, or if the gap between the offender and the victim is less than three years, as stated by the VA code § 18.2-63. Also, as the VA code §18.2-371 states, that it is prohibited for a minor that is between the ages of 15 and 17 to be involved with any type of sexual activity with an adult that is at least 18 years of age. Whereas, a class one misdemeanor will be issued to the offender in case he/she encourages or causes the minor aged 15 to 17 to do the above mentioned. Also, the offender will be issued the same if the victim that is involved in sexual activity is not his/her grandchild, spouse or child. If a child, under the age of 13, was involved in any type of sexual activity with an adult, then that adult will be faced with a felony, as stated by the VA code § 18.2-61.
Furthermore, there is an exception to statutory rape in Virginia. If an offender is older than 18 and is involved with any type of sexual activity with another that is below the age of 18, then he/she will be convicted of statutory rape. However, if the couple is married then the offender does not need to worry about any of the convictions since there is a marital exemption towards Virginia’s statutory rape laws.