A teenager from Florida, Kaitlyn Hunt was charged with two federal offenses when she turned 18-years-old. The charges stem from her lesbian (same-sex) relationship with her girlfriend, now a 15-year-old.
The open relationship began when both girls were minors.
Hunt’s parents alleged the police were summoned by the younger girl’s parents when Hunt turned 18-years-old. They assumed the charges were initiated as they disapproved of the same-sex relationship.
While the case relics numerous issues of teenage intimacy and same-sex discrimination, it highlights the importance of teenagers undergoing defamation for what they believe is innocuous activity. One day they are not criminals, the very next day they are charged with federal offenses.
Unfortunately, their relationships on the day they turn 18 can haunt them the rest of their lives.
Romeo and Juliet laws (or Juliet and Juliet; same-sex)
Intimate underage couples (teenagers) are usually exempt from laws pertaining to sexual conduct when the consent is mutual. It is when the older partner reaches the age of consent that it becomes technically illegal.
Under these circumstances, a law known as “Romeo and Juliet” may be applied. Under the Romeo and Juliet provision, the penalty of the crime is either reduced or eliminated.
While not all states have the Romeo and Juliet laws, Florida does.
The Hunt case has a strong resemblance to the previous case of Marcus Dixon. Dixon was a Georgia high school student who was charged in 2003 of a sexual misconduct of an underage female. The charges were later dropped to statutory rape and he spent months in prison.
Dixon and his female partner were teens at the time of the consensual sexual contact. The female was approximately two and a half years younger than Dixon. It is alleged the controversy was not because of their ages, but rather she was white and he was black. Dixon is currently an NFL professional.
The plight of these two cases (and other cases), brings an important aspect to the specific laws regarding consensual sexual contact of teenagers despite the underlying reasons that initially sought the charges.
On one day, the older partner isn’t breaking the law, then the very next day it is a felony, if reported out of spite.
What is wrong with our society when it is more important to charge teenagers with statutory rape upon their eighteenth birthday than to address the issues of teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases (STD)?
The Hunt incident isn’t about an adult preying on a child. Nor was the Dixon case justified for his time served in prison. This is about the federal laws without common sense and spiteful behavior.
Our kids need to be taught and guided, not condemned.
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