Another Example of Our Screwed-Up Laws

  • #26
mgb_phys
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Yes - I just meant that it's not unusual for different courts to take a completely opposite view if it's in their financial interest.
 
  • #27
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They were having sex for years before she got pregnant.. Perhaps its time to charge parents with negligence or at least not providing condoms? See if parents were charged for crimes their offspring commited, perhaps we would had a better society. Imagine a kid going away to foster home under social workers' supervision, finally learning to read and count and not dealing crack on the street. Now imagine their parents thrown in jail, paroled, community service wearing those orange jump suits and picking garbage they left on the side of the road.

What a glorious vision. Think about it, if your car that you parked suddenly just rolled down the street and killed a bunch of people, you would be charged. Your kids are your property, your responsibility. If you cant raise them or dont know how to raise them properly, you shouldnt operate your sex machinery, or if you chose to do so you should face the consequences your spawn creates for the rest of the society.
I don't know the laws in any other state but a woman I know here spent a couple days in jail after failing to make sure her daughter attended high school. She skipped chronically and the mother had been warned a couple times. So, to some extent parents are held responsible for the kids.
 
  • #28
BobG
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I completely agree with you that if the kid is not deemed legally old enough to have sex with someone over 18 then he should not be held responsible for child support. The girl broke the law and should have to fend for herself.
So the child doesn't have a right to sue his/her parents for support?

Or, since the father was an innocent victim of statutory rape, taxpayers that weren't even in the room when the sex occurred should step in and supply the support the father normally would?

Or, life is tough! The kid will just have to grow up tougher.

Obviously, if the child is too young to stick up for his/her rights, the court will have to appoint a lawyer to represent the child, but someone will stick up for the kid's rights in court.
 
  • #29
Gokul43201
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It seems that in both cases discussed so far, the women is yet to be convicted of the charges of rape/statutory rape. So, until that time, she is to be considered innocent of the crime and the father should have to pay for his share of child support. However, once a conviction is handed out, I hope the father is released from all parental obligations (and compensated for them) barring those that he chooses to accept, when legally capable.
 
  • #30
Gokul43201
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I am sorry but this is hilarious

A former baby sitter in St. Charles County has been charged with raping a 13-year-old boy she cared for in 1992. The incident came to light late last year when the woman sued the boy for support of the baby she says resulted from the union.
The St. Charles County prosecutor has charged the woman, Regina L. Vaughan, now 20 and
living in Mill Shoals, Ill., with eight counts of rape and one count of sodomy. Each count is a
felony that carries a maximum penalty of life in prison.
So she was over 18, and he was 13, and she was 'baby sitting' him, and they had sex, and then anal, and she got pregnant, and then sued him for child support, then was arrested for statutory rape, and then won the case for child support?

:rofl:
I find it extremely annoying when a supposed quote is provided from a news story, without a link accompanying it. Is it really that difficult to stick the url into the post?
 
  • #31
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So the child doesn't have a right to sue his/her parents for support?

Or, since the father was an innocent victim of statutory rape, taxpayers that weren't even in the room when the sex occurred should step in and supply the support the father normally would?

Or, life is tough! The kid will just have to grow up tougher.

Obviously, if the child is too young to stick up for his/her rights, the court will have to appoint a lawyer to represent the child, but someone will stick up for the kid's rights in court.
What?
 
  • #32
cronxeh
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I find it extremely annoying when a supposed quote is provided from a news story, without a link accompanying it. Is it really that difficult to stick the url into the post?
I find it vexing when someone jumps into the conversation without reading the entire thread from the beginning.
 
  • #33
Gokul43201
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I find it vexing when someone jumps into the conversation without reading the entire thread from the beginning.
That's not an unreasonable reaction for a short thread, but if you are quoting from a link provided in another post, especially if there is more than one link in the thread, it's not terribly hard to add a couple of words to indicate which one, if any, the quote is from.

As it turns out, I read only the first story cited in the OP (the second was a file, which I did not wish to download on the computer I'm using at the moment), so couldn't see where your quote was from.
 
  • #34
I completely agree with you that if the kid is not deemed legally old enough to have sex with someone over 18 then he should not be held responsible for child support. The girl broke the law and should have to fend for herself.
If an adult sells or provides alcohol to a minor they have committed a crime and 'victimized' the minor who is also held responsible for having purchased the alcohol. When a person has a legal responsibility it is not negated by having been victimized unless it can be established that they were an unwilling participant. If he was unwilling then she would be prosecuted for rape so legally we can assume that he was a willing participant and is still legally responsible for the consequences of his actions.

edit: An even more bizarre and truly ridiculous example of this is the young girl who was prosecuted under child pornography laws for having posted nude pictures of herself online. She was apparently being held criminally responsible for having victimized herself.
 
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  • #35
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It seems that in both cases discussed so far, the women is yet to be convicted of the charges of rape/statutory rape. So, until that time, she is to be considered innocent of the crime and the father should have to pay for his share of child support. However, once a conviction is handed out, I hope the father is released from all parental obligations (and compensated for them) barring those that he chooses to accept, when legally capable.
I think that if he's the father conviction of her for statutory rape is a forgone conclusion and he shouldn't have to pay in the meantime. Asking for child support from him is automatically admitting she committed this felony, so, no he shouldn't have to pay whether or not she's even prosecuted.
 
  • #36
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If an adult sells or provides alcohol to a minor they have committed a crime and 'victimized' the minor who is also held responsible for having purchased the alcohol. When a person has a legal responsibility it is not negated by having been victimized unless it can be established that they were an unwilling participant. If he was unwilling then she would be prosecuted for rape so legally we can assume that he was a willing participant and is still legally responsible for the consequences of his actions.
No, that's the thing about statutory rape: the willingness of the victim is considered to be the result of their immaturity. The law is aimed at the over 18 person who is assumed to be taking advantage of that.
 
  • #37
No, that's the thing about statutory rape: the willingness of the victim is considered to be the result of their immaturity. The law is aimed at the over 18 person who is assumed to be taking advantage of that.
I do not understand what the difference is. A minor is not to drink alcohol because of their supposed immaturity. If a person provides alcohol to a minor then they are victimizing the minor and taking advantage of their immaturity, that is why it is a crime even though they may not have personally plied the minor with booze. The minor is still held responsible for seeking out and acquiring the alcohol and will be held responsible for being in possession of alcohol regardless of whether or not a victimizer is identified. Similarly a minor will be held responsible for a child that they are the parent of regardless of the presence of a victimizer.
 
  • #38
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The reason why child supports exists is the same reason why welfare or unemployment exists, to prevent degradation of society into a 3rd world country.

However, like anything else abuse can still happen, and this one is particularly exploited: There are cases where the father paying child support later finds out the child is not his by conclusive DNA evidence. The courts still order you to pay child support for not your biological child.

Or if you know a child is not yours, and live with the mother and the child long enough to make a bond. There were cases where courts ordered the man to pay child support.
 
  • #39
Dembadon
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... (15yos don't have incomes).
I made about $350 a week when I was fifteen by bussing tables and shoveling snow for those who owned vacation homes.
 
  • #40
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I do not understand what the difference is. A minor is not to drink alcohol because of their supposed immaturity. If a person provides alcohol to a minor then they are victimizing the minor and taking advantage of their immaturity, that is why it is a crime even though they may not have personally plied the minor with booze. The minor is still held responsible for seeking out and acquiring the alcohol and will be held responsible for being in possession of alcohol regardless of whether or not a victimizer is identified. Similarly a minor will be held responsible for a child that they are the parent of regardless of the presence of a victimizer.
Yes, there is a lack of consistent thinking from one law to the next.

I just googled and there are three different ages of legal consent in the US depending on what state you're in.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ages_of_consent_in_North_America

These are all mitigated by various "close in age" clauses that drop the crime from felony to misdemeanor if the perp in within a certain number of years to the victim.

Anyway, you can go to jail for having sex with a 16 year old here in Ca, but you'd be perfectly legal in Minnesota.

I think the point of these laws is to protect young kids from sexual predators and to put a big buffer on top of that, but the age chosen as the cut off point has, necessarily, to be arbitrary. The irony is that there are slews of fully grown adults who aren't responsible enough to be having sex.
 
  • #41
mgb_phys
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If he was unwilling then she would be prosecuted for rape so legally we can assume that he was a willing participant and is still legally responsible for the consequences of his actions.
My understanding of the US law is that if one person is under-age it is not necessary to prove they were unwilling. The assumption is that they were not able to give consent - hence statutory rape, you only have to prove the act took place to get a conviction.

An even more bizarre and truly ridiculous example of this is the young girl who was prosecuted under child pornography laws for having posted nude pictures of herself online. She was apparently being held criminally responsible for having victimized herself.
Even more bizarre there was a case in the UK where the girl was simultaneously put on the local child services at-risk register (since she was a child victim of a sex crime) and the sex offenders register (for making indecent images of a child)

These cases are more ironic in the UK, the age of consent (sex and marriage) is 16 but the child porn laws (copied from the US) are 18. So it could be illegal to make a video of your wife giving birth.
 
  • #42
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My understanding of the US law is that if one person is under-age it is not necessary to prove they were unwilling. The assumption is that they were not able to give consent - hence statutory rape, you only have to prove the act took place to get a conviction.
I believe this is the case. The point being it would be easy to talk a 10 year old child into just about anything. One could not justify such a crime based on their willingness.
 
  • #43
mgb_phys
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I suspect it's also useful among that small minority of police officers/prosecutors who aren't entirely perfect.

ie, arrest teenager, suggest they admit to possession of a joint, or they do 10years for rape of their 17yro girlfriend = another conviction in the war against drugs.
 
  • #44
BobG
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I don't know the laws in any other state but a woman I know here spent a couple days in jail after failing to make sure her daughter attended high school. She skipped chronically and the mother had been warned a couple times. So, to some extent parents are held responsible for the kids.
No, that's the thing about statutory rape: the willingness of the victim is considered to be the result of their immaturity. The law is aimed at the over 18 person who is assumed to be taking advantage of that.
In the case of the girl that chronically skipped school, the mother may receive some punishment, but there's no realistic way to spare the girl from the consequences of skipping school. Her immaturity won't be considered a valid excuse by her teachers and they will fail her when she fails the tests. Her high school won't give her a diploma just to spare her the consequences of bad decisions made because of immaturity. The immature choices she made as a teenager will affect her for the rest of her life.

Likewise, the teenage boy that was a victim of statutory sex shouldn't escape the biological consequences of his decisions. The child was the only party that had no possibility of avoiding the situation. For the adult woman and the teenage boy, both had choices, even if one made choices under the handicap of being a young teenager.
 
  • #45
Dembadon
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... Likewise, the teenage boy that was a victim of statutory sex shouldn't escape the biological consequences of his decisions. The child was the only party that had no possibility of avoiding the situation. For the adult woman and the teenage boy, both had choices, even if one made choices under the handicap of being a young teenager.
I am in agreement with BobG.

His immaturity doesn't blind him from the fact that having sexual intercourse with a female has the possibility of creating a child. I don't know a single 15 year old, and don't think I've ever met one, who does not know this. Sex education is often taught in middle school, and even if one hasn't taken a sex ed. course by the time they're 15 years old, you'd have a hard time convincing me that one doesn't know the consequences/possible results of copulation.

At 15, he is old enough to have a job. Asking for child support is not unreasonable.
 
  • #46
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If you (as a lawmaker or judge) accept that a 15 yo is capable of understanding "having sexual intercourse with a female has the possibility of creating a child" and you hold him responsible, then stop the hypocrisy of seeking a conviction under statutory rape laws for his
"adult" partner.

Age of consent should be equalized with age of responsibility.

I am in agreement with BobG.

His immaturity doesn't blind him from the fact that having sexual intercourse with a female has the possibility of creating a child. I don't know a single 15 year old, and don't think I've ever met one, who does not know this. Sex education is often taught in middle school, and even if one hasn't taken a sex ed. course by the time they're 15 years old, you'd have a hard time convincing me that one doesn't know the consequences/possible results of copulation.

At 15, he is old enough to have a job. Asking for child support is not unreasonable.
 
  • #47
Dembadon
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If you (as a lawmaker or judge) accept that a 15 yo is capable of understanding "having sexual intercourse with a female has the possibility of creating a child" and you hold him responsible, then stop the hypocrisy of seeking a conviction under statutory rape laws for his
"adult" partner.

Age of consent should be equalized with age of responsibility.
Seems fair to me.
 
  • #48
Char. Limit
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All right, let's eliminate the law against "statutory rape", then. After all, it "seems fair to me". We don't need to worry about adults having sex with children, because they're capable of understanding that stuff. Right?
 
  • #49
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All right, let's eliminate the law against "statutory rape", then. After all, it "seems fair to me". We don't need to worry about adults having sex with children, because they're capable of understanding that stuff. Right?
Or you could just have a more reasonable age of consent and responsibility than 18? Perhaps one that references actual studies concerning the ability to understand the consequences of one's actions?
 
  • #50
mgb_phys
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We don't need to worry about adults having sex with children, because they're capable of understanding that stuff. Right?
Until 2005 the USA executed people for crimes committed when they were under 18
 

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