And when those laws are broken — even unknowingly — it stops becoming a parental decision and starts becoming a legal matter. The state has defined an appropriate age of consent, and under Minnesota statute, people cannot have any type of sexual contact with a child under the age of 16 if they are more than 24 months older than them.“Sexual contact is also defined as breasts and inner thigh areas,” said Becker County Investigator Kathy Nguyen, who says the level of charges is determined by how far those teens go.

Charges can range from fifth-degree criminal sexual conduct all the way up to an automatic felony if it’s proven there was sexual penetration.

For example, a 16 year old can legally consent to engage in sexual activity with a partner who is 18 years old, but not a partner who is 19 years old For more detailed information please see Chapter 12. 20130924091431 “Age of Consent” - Minnesota According to the Minnesota Criminal Code: -The “age of consent” is 16 years old - A person under the age of 13 cannot legally consent to sexual activity under any circumstances - A person between the ages of 13 and 16 may legally consent to sexual activity if the partner is no more than 2 years older For additional information and further details on the “age of consent” in Minnesota please see sections 609.341 – 609.3451 of the Minnesota Criminal Code: https://

5, 2015: Samuel Benda, now 21, was charged in 2011 with possession of child pornography for having a nude photo of his 17-year-old high school girlfriend on his cellphone, taken on the night of their prom.

One or more of these charges may be used to prosecute violations of the Minnesota Age of Consent, as statutory rape or the Minnesota equivalent of that charge.

The severity of the criminal charge (felony, misdemeanor, etc) depends on the specifics of the acts committed and the relative ages of the perpetrator and victim. Statutory maximum sentence is 25% longer than for the underlying predatory crime or 50% longer than for the underlying predatory crime if the violation is committed by a person with a previous sex offense conviction.

It’s having sexual relations when there is too big of an age gap.

The Forum News Service does not always report on the specifics of juvenile cases, but local law enforcement officials say it is a problem they see regularly.

If the younger party is 13-15, their partners must be no more then 2 years older, and children under 13 may only consent to those less than 36 months older. Close in age exemptions, commonly known as "Romeo and Juliet laws", are put in place to prevent the prosecution of individuals who engage in consensual sexual activity when both participants are significantly close in age to each other, and one or both partners are below the age of consent.

Because there is no such "Romeo and Juliet law" in Minnesota, it is possible for two individuals both under the age of 16 who willingly engage in intercourse to both be prosecuted for statutory rape, although this is rare.

While Benda does not have a criminal record in Minnesota, the charges still show up in public records. In a hotel room two years ago after prom, Samuel J.