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Can fully-clothed dry-humping someone under 18 without consent count as rape in the state of Arizona?

And if not, what sort of offense is it? If found guilty, what would a typical punishment be in the US?

Does it matter whether the perpetrator is also underaged?

Does it matter if the perpetrator holds down the victim in place while doing it?

Does it matter if the perpetrator is in a position of authority? (Say the perpetrator is a high school teacher and the victim is a high-school student.)

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  • Laws on what does and does not constitute rape vary significantly from one US state to another. In some states there is no rape without penetration. But in many states where the action described is not rape, it will be some level of sexual assault To get an accurate answer, you will need to specify a particular US State.. Aug 2 at 5:23
  • Could be indecent assault. It would be hard to really know what a case could be charged with. DAs have great leeway in how they prosecute and under what laws they make their prosecution. They can and often do make a mess of proceedings by prosecutting under the incorrect laws.
    – Neil Meyer
    Aug 2 at 10:19
  • The answer to the first question is "no" because there is no crime called "rape" in Arizona.
    – phoog
    Aug 2 at 17:41
  • @phoog The second question would be: is there a legal description of what dry-humping actualy is? I have never heard of the term and it seems I'm not alone: dry humping - Sex mit voller Bekleidung - Translation correct?: English ⇔ German Forums - leo.org We recently had a lengthy discussion about the correct translation of "dry humping" and we came to the conclusion that there is no direct translation. Aug 2 at 20:47
  • @MarkJohnson that there is no direct translation does not mean that the term is ambiguous or unclear. There was a prominent movie some years ago called The Reader, the title being a somewhat imprecise and ambiguous translation of the German Der Vorleser. The imprecise translation was used because there is no direct translation of der Vorleser into English, yet der Vorleser is perfectly clear and unambiguous in German. As an unambiguous English phrase (even though previously unknown to you), its plain everyday meaning is its legal meaning.
    – phoog
    Aug 2 at 20:53

1 Answer 1

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No

Largely because the common law offence of rape was abolished s80AD of the Crimes Act 1900.

The unwanted part makes this the crime of Sexual Touching punishable by 5 years imprisonment (or 7 years if there are circumstances of agrivation which includes where the perpetrator is in a position of authority over the victim).

The under 18 part may lead to the crimes of Sexual Touching - child under 10 (16 years) or Sexual Touching - child between 10 and 16 if the self-evident ages apply.

There is also Sexual touching—young person between 16 and 18 under special care ; special care includes a bunch of categories which broadly boil down to being in a position of special trust with respect to the victim.

Holding down the victim may lead to additional common assault charges.

s80AC does not allow the age of the perpetrator to be taken into account in presuming sexual intent, however, it does allow other laws with respect to the age of criminal responsibility to apply. There is a Defence of Similar Age with respect to the child offences (obviously if there is no content this doesn't help) if the victim is over 14 and the perpetrator is aged within 2 years of the victim.

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