Romeo and Juliet Law Takes Effect in Texas

Until the implementation of this new in Texas, a 17-year old that was convicted for having consensual sexual relations with someone under the age of seventeen was required to register as a sex offender.

This meant that a consensual sexual relationship between a 16 year-old and a 17-year old was illegal, and would result in the 17-year old registering.  Although it is still illegal, recent changes to Texas law now exempts the actor from registering.

This exemption only applies if a consensual sexual relation is had between a teenager or young adult over the age of 17 and a teenager under the age of 17, but there is no more than a four-year age difference between the two young people. Additionally, the so-called “victim” of the sexual encounter must be at least 15 years of age for the Romeo and Juliet law to apply.

Those individuals that are currently required to register due to a past transaction of this nature may now petition the court to be removed from the registry.  The questions still remains why it is still a sex crime for a 17-year old to have consensual sex with a 16-year old.  What are your thoughts?

If you or someone you know has been charged with this type of crime, please consult with our sex crime lawyers before speaking to anyone.

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10 Responses to Romeo and Juliet Law Takes Effect in Texas

  1. KR says:

    I’m so sick of seeing good men who worked so hard to build their life go to jail for having consensual sex with teenagers who lie about their age. They should go to juvenile jail!

  2. ro89 says:

    G’Day! B Free,
    Thanks, on a related note, Under Florida Law when an accused is sentenced in a statutory rape case, the Court is required to impose a designation as a sex offender or a sex predator depending on the nature of the charges. These designations involve very stringent and public statutory conditions and restrictions that may have a devastating impact on the future of a young accused adult. Often times these harsh designations were placed on defendants who were very young and who were involved in committed relationships with the victim of the crime; for example where an 18 year old defendant was involved in a committed or monogamous relationship (many times with a child) with a 15 year-year old girl. Recognizing the facts of certain statutory rape cases may not call for these stringent sex offender or sex predator designations, in 2007 the Florida Legislature passed the Romeo & Juliet Law. This law allows a defendant under certain circumstances, who is convicted of a statutory rape case, to petition the Court for removal of the sex offender or sex predator registry designation.
    Regards

  3. SR says:

    My son who had just turned 19 is headed to prison for having a consensual relationship with a girl who was just about to turn 14. I never agreed with this relationship, however I believe the 25 yr prison term they are trying to hand him is EXTREME ! I believe we need to educate and counsel these kids and not throw them in prison, just so the court system and DA’s can look good for voting time.
    These little girls will do this again and never been questioned but the boys will always have to pay !

    • Denise Cotton says:

      I totally agree with you my son was 18 when he was dating a 14 year old and I was against it but had not control over it. Her Parents allowed him to live with them, the father went as far as take them OUT OF TOWN WITH HIM TO HAVE MY SON WORK FOR HIM. Their goal was for my son to marry their daughter after some time the girl became pregnant. They had the baby and continued to live with her parents for a few months. When the baby was around 5 months they broke up and the girl moved out of town with her sister. After the child was five years old the girl called my sons now girlfriend and informed her she would be filling child support because that was the only way she could recieve help from the goverment. My son appeared in Child Support as did she, he agreed to pay the amount. One week after that court date she called my son once again a cried and pleaded for him to agree to not have any contact with the child because her boyfriend had been raising her as his. My son refused and days later his house was raided by a swat team. He was arrested and charged with RAPE. He sat in jail for around six months all during this time the DA and his lawyer were trying to get him to take a plea. She was able to decide what she wanted to happen to him. She insisted on Jail time and loose coustdy of their child. He refused. Finaly they offered him 10 years probation and no contact with her or the child during those ten years and Register as a sex offender. After sitting in jail for a few more months her took the deal. I wish he hadent, he cant get a joj as a sex offender, he lost his drivers lisance because he cant pay child support without a job.He cant pay his probation with out a job and to make it worst he has to report to his PO every week because he has no permanent address due to the restrictions against sex offenders living in most cities.  Its just a never ending cycle of doom. He should fall under the new Romeo, Juliet law but they are not mentioning it and my family has no funds to hire a lawyer. I think her parent should suffer also because the lied in court by saying they did not know he was older, just as she lied to the police saying she was raped not in a relationship. Her lies were not adding up, so they dident get him for rape but he did end up an offender because of her age.

  4. juliet says:

    i am a juliet and i agree this so not fair for the guy espeically if he has not had sex with her and just wants to be with her but he 5yrs apart everybody says your to young maybe if you were a little old ok but not at 16 or 17 and at 16 he being 21 or at 17 he being 22 if it wont matter when im 18 then why not now because i love him and im not going to have sex till im married so whats to worry i wont get pregnant i practice abstenance if age wont matter when im 18 then why whywhywhywhwywhwy?????????

  5. J says:

    Okay. I think I can relate to “Juliet” who commented. My boyfriend who is 18 and I, age 15, had consensual sex. My mother found out and we were threatened to be sent to court. This law totally saved us, and I am very thankful for it.

  6. Mark says:

    Ok I know these two couple ok they had sex and he was 16 and she was 12 but now he is 17 and she is 13 does the Romeo and Juliet Law still cover that?? Cuz he going to jail for an adlat but he was 16 he was a minnor .. But they do love echother but can someone plz tell me if that law could go in efect with this case??

    • B Free says:

      Don’t quote me on this, but he if charged with having sex with her while she was 12, then the Romeo and Juliet law would not apply because she was under the age of 13.

  7. Just Me says:

    Ok so just making sure. Is it legal then for a 15 and a 16 year old to have sex consensualy? 

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