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Illinois defense lawyerOne of the most controversial and emotional crimes a person can be accused of - whether the accusation is true or not - is a sex crime. One of the reasons why sex crime accusations are so controversial is the unclarity of what does and does not insinuate consent. Each state has its own sexual consent laws and varying punishments for sex crimes. It’s important to understand what constitutes sexual consent in your state.

Sexual Consent in Illinois

According to Illinois state law, consent is defined as a freely given agreement to the act of sexual penetration or sexual conduct in question. It also states that a lack of verbal or physical resistance or submission by the victim in response to the use of force or threat of force does not constitute consent. Illinois state law also says that the manner of dress of the victim does not constitute consent. Furthermore, a person can withdraw consent during the course of a sexual act and any further action by the accused is considered non-consensual.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_243122509-1.jpgDue in large part to the publicity of high-profile cases, laws pertaining to the statute of limitations and handling of sexual assault and harassment claims are undergoing change or review. Officials maintain these efforts are necessary to protect victims. However, consideration is now being given to the way the registry of sexual offenders is maintained in Illinois.

Task Force Makes Recommendations

At the end of last year, a specially named task force published a report that proposed certain changes to the way Illinois handles sex offenders and the state’s registration list. The panel included public advocates, victims, members of law enforcement, defense attorneys and prosecutors.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_736146343.jpgVictims of sexual assault and sexual harassment have begun stepping forward with allegations of events that occurred both recently and in the past. With this increased awareness comes a renewed scrutiny of how both alleged victims and those accused of sexual crimes are treated under the law.  

In Illinois and Across the Country

Last summer, Illinois officials passed legislation removing the statute of limitations on cases of sexual abuse crimes against children. The bill was quickly signed into law. However, renewed attention is being placed on the issue of sex crimes in large part due to the revelations of past actions by entertainment industry professionals, high profile physicians, and even elected officials.

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Posted on in Sex Crimes

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_243763714.jpgOver the years, a number of school teachers and coaches have faced vigorous prosecution for alleged sexual abuse or misconduct with students. Even when the alleged actions occurred several years in the past, victims have raised concerns that impact the lives and careers of those who may have been involved.

New Cases Emerge From Incidents That Occurred in the Past

Both current and former school employees are the targets of prosecution when it comes to allegations of sexual abuse or sexual misconduct. Even when the incident includes claims of a consensual relationship, a situation involving a person of authority over a student results in aggressive investigation by law enforcement. Two cases that came to light in Illinois last year demonstrate how claims of past incidents can result in charges against educators.

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Posted on in Sex Crimes

b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-35.jpgIn Illinois, as is the case in all other 49 states, lawmakers have established statutes that set the age at which an individual may legally give consent to participate in sexual activity. Violation of the age of consent, by one or both partners, can result in serious sex crime charges that carry severe consequences.

Sexual Abuse Laws

In nearly all cases, the age of consent in Illinois is 17, which means engaging in sexual activity with a partner 16 or younger will result in a range of charges, from a misdemeanor to a felony, under the state’s sexual abuse laws.

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