Explicit photos on the cell phone of a teenage girl resulting in sex offense charges against two North Carolina men. The girl’s father found the images and alerted police, which eventually led to an investigation by the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office.
The men involved, one 21 and the other 28, are accused of taking indecent liberties with a minor and one faces two additional counts of statutory rape. The girl was 14 in January when both men are accused of establishing a sexual relationship with her at or after a party.
Statutory Rape In North Carolina
Engaging in a sex act or intercourse with a minor who is 13, 14 or 15 can be charged as statutory rape in North Carolina. The age of the other person will determine at what level the offense is charged:
- If six years or older than the minor involved, the act is considered a Class B1 felony sex offense.
- If more than four years older than the minor involved but less than six years older, the act is considered a Class C felony sex offense.
North Carolina provides for sentence enhancements for sex offenses – like statutory rape- that can result in a person being required to register as a sex offender if convicted. North Carolina law considers statutory rape to be a “sexually violent offense” if the offender was more than six years older than the minor involved. Conviction for a sexually violent offense requires lifetime registration on the sex offender registry.
In determining the minimum and maximum sentence that can be imposed after a conviction for statutory rape, the sentencing enhancements for sex offenses typically make the maximum sentence much longer than for other felonies. Of course, there are other factors involved in determining a potential sentence that should be discussed with your criminal defense attorney such as any prior criminal history.
Source: WBTV, “Deputies: Two arrested after dad found sex messages on teen girl’s phone,” March 27, 2013