Sex crimes are serious offenses in Indiana
Indiana has made strict prosecution of deviate conduct and abuse one of its top priorities. With a five-year plan put into place in 2016, it’s fair to say the state does not take lightly allegations of child sexual assault, sexual abuse, rape, sexual battery, Internet sex crimes and other sexual misconduct allegations. If you’ve been charged with any sex crimes, you face a difficult battle against prosecutors. If convicted, it could change the rest of your life.
Child sex crimes in the state of Indiana
Child sexual assault is on the rise in Indiana. The Indianapolis Star investigated a report in late 2015 that showed one in six Indiana high school girls had been a victim of sexual assault by the age of 18. These alarming statistics contribute to traditionally trusted figures, such as teachers, coaches and extended family members, becoming suspects in sex crime investigations. Access to children from a trusted position is one of the reasons someone would be suspected of child sexual assault.
Anyone over the age of 18 who requests that a child under the age of 14, according to Indiana law, engage in sexual conduct could be charged with child solicitation. For those older than the age of 21, asking a child under the age of 16 to engage in sexual conduct also constitutes child solicitation. In either case, actual sexual conduct does not need to take place for you to be charged with this crime. Using the Internet or a computer network leads to more severe punishment under Indiana law.
As one of the darker subjects of the Internet, the possession, production or transmission of pornographic material featuring minors under the age of 18 is considered a child pornography crime in Indiana. This is a form of child exploitation, which also includes child prostitution and cheap labor.
Three ways you could be charged with statutory rape in Indiana
The age of consent in Indiana may be 16, which means a minor at least 16 years of age may consent to sexual activity with someone over 18 under certain statutes. What you may not know is that statutory rape charges could be filed against you in three different ways, even if the alleged victim is of the age of consent, depending on the relationship between the alleged offender and victim.
- Child molestation. This is a form of statutory rape in Indiana. Charges are leveled against someone who has engaged in a sex act with a child under the age of 14. This crime could be brought about through fondling or touching with intent to arouse or satisfy sexual desires of yourself or that of the child. The severity of this charge could be increased if a controlled substance is used in perpetration of the act without the child’s knowledge. Use of deadly weapons also exacerbates this charge. Child molestation charges in Indiana carry a maximum sentence of 30 years and fines of as much as $10,000.
- Sexual misconduct with a child. Indiana statutes say that someone over the age of 21 engaging in sexual conduct with a child older than 14 and younger than 16 are subject to this statutory rape charge. Under Indiana law, you could face a maximum of 30 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Child seduction. Anyone over the age of 18 who is in a position of supervision or trust over a child – such as a grandparent, guardian, adoptive parent, teacher, school employee, or military recruiter – could be charged with child seduction of a minor who is younger than 18, regardless of Indiana deeming 16 as the age of consent. Child seduction charges, if you’re convicted, can cost you your license if you’re a teacher or a trusted licensed professional, likely hampering your ability to find a job in your chosen career sector. Between 2001 and 2005, the Associated Press reported that 29 teachers and other professionals had lost their licenses due to sexual misconduct, including child seduction. The penalty, if convicted of this crime, could be 1 ½ years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.