AGE OF CONSENT

The North Carolina Age of Consent is 16 years old. In the United States, the age of consent is the minimum age at which an individual is considered legally old enough to consent to participation in sexual activity. Individuals aged 15 or younger in North Carolina are not legally able to consent to sexual activity, and such activity may result in prosecution for some sex related crime.

Statutory rape is prosecuted under North Carolina’s rape and sex crime laws. Penalties depend on the ages of the defendant and victim, and the conduct that occurred, as described below.

Statutory rape of a person 15 years old or younger involves vaginal intercourse between:

  • a child who is 15 years old or younger and a defendant who is at least 12 years old and at least six years older than the victim (a Class B1 felony), or
  • a child who is 15 years old or younger and a defendant who is at least 12 years old and at least four but less than six years older than the victim (a Class C felony).                          
  •   (N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-27.25 (2018)

First degree statutory sexual offense involves oral or anal intercourse, or penetration with an object or body part other than the penis, between a minor who is 12 or younger, and a defendant who is 12 or older and at least four years older than the victim. First degree statutory sexual offense is a Class B1 felony. (N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-27.29 (2018).)

Statutory sexual offense with a person who is 15 years old or younger includes oral or anal intercourse or penetration with an object or body part other than the penis, between:

  • a child who is 15 years old or younger and a defendant who is at least 12 years old and at least six years older than the victim (a Class B1 felony), or
  • a child who is 15 years old or younger and a defendant who is at least 12 years old and at least four but less than six years older than the victim (a Class C felony).
  • (N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-27.30 (2018).

Indecent liberties between children includes sexual behavior between minors for the purpose of arousing or gratifying sexual desire, when the defendant is younger than 16 but three or more years older than the victim. The offense is a Class 1 misdemeanor. (N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-202.2 (2018).)

Taking indecent liberties with children includes sexual behavior for the purpose of arousing or gratifying sexual desire between a child and a defendant who is 16 years of age or older and at least five years older than the victim. The offense is a Class F felony. (N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-202.1 (2018).)

North Carolina has a structured sentencing system, so penalties for the offenses listed above vary according to your criminal history. Penalties can include fines, jail (or prison) time, or both.

If you have been charged with, or accused of committing, any sex crime, do not talk to law enforcement! Call Dobson Law Firm immediately and let us help you (919-591-2240) or email at info@dobsonlawnc.com.

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