Can I date a 18 year old when Im 15 in Missouri?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can I date a 18 year old when Im 15 in Missouri?

I live in Missouri. I am a 15 year old
and Im dating a 17 year old, but hes
going to be turning 18 pretty soon.
Were 2 years and 9 months apart.
Would it be legal for us to date? Is
there a Romeo and Juliet law in
Missouri protecting him since he is
under 21 and Im over 14?

Asked on March 25, 2019 under Criminal Law, Missouri


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

The age of consent in MO is 17 years old. This means that even if sexual acts are "consensual," if one party is under the age of 17, statutory rape charges can be filed.  However, there is an exception to statutory rape if the victim is over 14 and the accused is under 21. However, it does not mean they cannot get into trouble with the law since MO also has a law that makes it child molesting a misdemeanor offense.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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