Sexual contact with children is a very serious crime for a very good reason. Persons found to be in violation of sex crime laws often face very harsh punishments. Thus, it is imperative to understand statutory rape laws in Mississippi. All states in the country have statutory rape laws, but each state handles them differently. According to Age of Consent, the legal age of consent in Mississippi is 16.
What this means is that individuals who are fifteen years or younger in Mississippi are not legally able to consent to sexual activity. However, there are exceptions to this rule. The first is if the minor in question is legally married to the person who is over 18. However, the marriage rules in Mississippi are relatively strict, given that the absolute youngest a person may legally marry is fifteen years old for females and seventeen years old for males; parental permission is required for this. Otherwise, the age of marriage in Mississippi is twenty-one years.
The other major exception to Mississippi statutory rape laws is commonly known as a “Romeo and Juliet Clause.” The idea behind this law is to prevent teens who are around the same age from falling afoul of Mississippi statutory rape laws based upon a technicality. In Mississippi, the Romeo and Juliet Clause only applies if the gap between the two partners is less than 36 months. So, in Mississippi, a fifteen-year-old could legally consent to sexual activity with a seventeen-year-old.
This post is intended to educate you on statutory rape laws in the state of Mississippi. It is not intended to be taken as legal advice.