Legal dating difference
In addition, the defendant had made reasonable attempts to determine the victim’s age, such as checking a driver’s license.
For example, if John, who is over the age of 18, is prosecuted for breaking Arizona’s age of consent laws, his attorney may be able to use the Mistaken Identity defense if the victim, who is really 15, had told John that she was 18.
Defense II: The Mistaken Identity Rule In addition to the Romeo and Juliet defense, your attorney may be able to use the Mistaken Identity Rule if the facts of your case apply.
A mistaken identity defense is when a defense attorney may argue that the defendant was not aware that the victim’s age was lower than the victim had purported.
If you are found guilty, a class six felony, the crime can lead to one year in prison.
Depending on the quality of your defense lawyer and the discretion of the judge, the class six felony may be bumped down to a class 1 misdemeanor.
John’s reasonable attempts included checking Jane’s license and asking her friends.
An example of when the Romeo and Juliet defense may apply is if consensual sexual intercourse has taken place between the victim who is 17 years old and the defendant who is 18 years and is attending high school or has graduated.
The advantage of using the Romeo and Juliet defense is that it could mitigate the defendant’s liability for the crime or clear it altogether.
Under the statute, it is illegal to knowingly or intentionally engage in sexual intercourse or oral sexual contact with any person who is below the age of 18.
For example, if you are 21 years old and your partner is 17 years old, it is illegal for you to engage in sexual intercourse or oral sexual contact with your partner.