Is it Statutory Rape if the Relationship Started when she was 17, But she’s now 18?

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“A friend of mine is a 34 year old Reverend in the state of New Jersey. He is in relationship with an 18 year old girl at his church. The relationship started when she was 17. The young ladies father is threating to go to the authorities if contact is continued between the two. Both really believe they love each other and want the relationship to continue. What can happen to the 34 year old if the father goes to the authorities? I believe the state of New Jersey age of consent is 16. Does that change since he is a Reverand at his church and she is still in high school?”

[NOTE: Articles and answers on DearEsq., while written and published by lawyers, do not constitute legal advice, and no attorney-client relationship is formed by your reading of this information. You should always consult with an attorney for any legal situations.]

No law is broken if both participants in a sexual relationship are over the age of consent in the United States. Your friend’s future as a Reverend or his reputation might be tarnished, but if she is over the statutory age, your friend has not committed a crime.



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Author: House Attorney

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