Jan 27

Statute Found Unconstitutional (2015)

Statute Found Unconstitutional (2015)

Our client was charged with Felony Criminal Sexual Conduct and Possession of Child Pornography relating to sexual encounters with a 15-year-old. Our client believed (and had evidence of his belief) that the 15-year-old was really 16 (the age of consent in Minnesota). The law in Minnesota prohibits anyone more than 10 years older than the victim to raise the “mistake-of-age.” defense. Ryan and Elizabeth raised this issue before the district court, arguing that the law was unconstitutional that someone who was 10 years older than the victim could raise as a defense the mistake-of-age . . . but someone who was 11 years older could not. Our client was far older than the victim, but the same logic applied. The judge agreed and ruled that the defense could raise the mistake-of-age defense. The government dismissed the criminal sexual conduct charges and allowed to a lesser plea of guilty immediately prior to trial, a plea bargain that we were seeking since the case began.

See our Memorandum here