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Is it legal in California for a 28 year old man to have intercourse with my 17 year old daughter if she consents?

San Bernardino, CA |

I ask the question above because, I have no legal knowledge in this type of matter. However, my common sense and religious morals tell me that it's not right. I have pleaded with my daughter to stay at home with us so she can finish high school and to pursue a higher level of the education after she graduates from high school. Simply put, my efforts to make my daughter understand my reasons for the advice I was trying to convey to her was in vain. My daughter refuses to live with us and has moved in with her 28 year old boyfriend and his parents who condone the relationship that their son is having with my girl. To make matters worse, my daughter's best friend just advised me that my daughter is now pregnant with this man's child and that he already has two kids with two other women.

Attorney Answers 3

  1. This is most likely statutory rape. You should contact the local police department.

  2. The age of consent is 18 years in California. Any sexual intercourse before that age with someone of age (> 18 years old) is statutory rape. Please see Penal Code § 261.5. Please see the link below for further information.

    Please note that some professionals are REQUIRED by law to report the crime. See Penal Code §§ 11166, 11165.7 for further information.

  3. This is a statutory rape, but it does not stop there. The parents of the young man are willingly assisting him in a possible kidnapping. Your daughter, because of her age falls under your custody and consent. You have given no consent for her to live with this family, you have expressed a desire for her to return to live with you, and the family is actively encouraging the young man and your daughter to reside with them.

    With that said, this may also be a moot point. If your daughter is close to attaining the age of majority, which is 18 in California, then there would be little incentive for the District Attorney's office to pursue what would then be a consensual relationship in name and fact.

    You also may want to ask yourself, if your daughter is indeed pregnant by this man, is seeing him prosecuted more important than seeing him gainfully employed and paying for his child?

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