Statutory rape is an often misunderstood charge. It does not always involve violence and may even occur when both parties are agreeable to the sexual contact.
According to RAINN, statutory rape is a form of sexual battery, which is any type of sexual activity involving the genitals or anus of a person under the age of consent.
Third-degree statutory rape is probably the one you are most familiar with. It involves sexual intercourse or activity with someone who is between the ages of 14 and 16. Being under the age of consent, people ages 14 to 16 cannot legally agree to sexual activity. So, while it may be a mutual decision to engage in the contact, it is still illegal as long as you are 19 years or older and not married to the other person.
Second-degree statutory rape involves sexual contact with someone between the ages of 11 and 14. It also include contact with someone who is 14 or 15 when you have a family relationship or some type of authority over the person. It includes situations where you are underage yourself with someone who is 14 or older. For example, if you are 17 and your girlfriend is 14, you could potentially face statutory rape charges in some cases.
First-degree statutory rape is straightforward. It occurs if you have a previous conviction for a sexual crime and the person you have contact with is under the age of 16. It also occurs in any case where the person is 11 years old or younger.