Facing Charges For Unknowing Involvement With a Minor: Understanding Your Rights

Sometimes people find themselves in situations that could have serious consequences, although they were ignorant that they were committing a crime. One such situation is when a minor is deceptive about their age and pose as an adult in order to entice other adults into sexual situations. 

Minors can easily conceal their age when engaging in social media and dating apps which are marketed to “adults only. In Arizona minors are deemed to be incapable of consenting, which means that lack of knowledge will not stop police from arresting you and charging you. If convicted, you could face life altering consequences such as incarceration in the Department of Corrections, Lifetime sex offender probation and Life time Sex Offender Registry. Because these are considered crimes against children the stakes could not be higher a  Mesa sex crimes lawyer is essential to your freedom and regaining control of the situation.

Lawyer preparing documents with a justice scale, representing legal defense for sexual assault charges

How Minors Mislead Adults Online: Common Tactics & Platforms

The most common place to find minors being deceptive about their age is online. Many online platforms like Tinder, Facebook, instagram, and tik tok claim they have safeguards to ensure that children are identified. There is no age verification that users must go through a minor can simply alter their date of birth. Therefore, it is very simple to add a false age. 

Another reason minors may lie is to take advantage of online dating or to meet new people online. It is simple to scroll through lists of people and strike up conversations, oftentimes with no idea of their true identity. Even if you are honest with your information, there are many who are not and if you’re an adult, you will be held accountable.

Is it Illegal for a minor to Lie About their Age?

When it comes to online accounts, it is not strictly illegal to lie about your age. Therefore, if a minor does so, there will be no criminal charges. Online platforms do have terms of service where they require their users to be a certain age, so it is possible to have someone suspended or their account terminated if they lie. 

While it is not illegal to lie about ages, the lie can be very dangerous for you . For instance, they may have been 12 when they signed up, but said they were 18 and may use an alais. Once again there are no consequences for the minor. However,  you can be in serious trouble and you will  require the help of a Mesa criminal lawyer. 

Understanding Consent Laws: Age Of Consent In Arizona

In Arizona, the age of consent is 18 years old. This means that individuals under the age of 18 cannot legally consent to sexual activity. Engaging in sexual conduct with a person under the age of 18 may result in criminal charges, such as statutory rape or sexual conduct with a minor.

However, there is a close-in-age exemption that typically allows sexual activity between those of a similar age without resulting in criminal charges. For instance, if you are 18 and the other person is 16 and the sex is consensual, you may be protected under this provision since you are only two years apart. However, it is not recommended and laws change so it’s essential to contact a Mesa sex crimes lawyer to be sure if you find yourself in this situation.

Let VS Criminal Defense Help You Create a Defense If you have been arrested for un-knowingly engaging in sexual contact with a minor.

VS Criminal Defense is an experienced felony sex crime law firm ready to assist you in navigating complex legal situations. If you’re facing issues related to a minor misrepresenting their age, Michelle can work with you to create a robust defense strategy. With her knowledge and experience in Arizona sex crime law, she’ll explore potential legal defenses, analyze the circumstances surrounding the case, and ensure your rights are protected. 

Contact us today for a consultation and receive guidance and the advocacy you need in this challenging matter.


Published On: March 6th, 2024Categories: Sex Crime Defense

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