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Unpaid Taxi Fare Results In Felony Charge Of Unlawful Sexual Conduct With A Minor

December 13, 2015, Cincinnati, Ohio - This past Sunday, William Simpson age twenty-five, refused to pay a taxi company who drove a female to his residence. The taxi driver called the police to report the unpaid fare. When the police arrived, they saw the female putting on clothes. Upon questioning, both Simpson and the female reported having consensual sex. In an online profile and chat, the female had previously stated that she was twenty years old, but in reality she was only fifteen.

The police charged Simpson with Unlawful Sexual Conduct with a Minor. Unlawful Sexual Conduct with a minor can be a misdemeanor when the defendant is within four years of age of the alleged victim. In this case, Simpson was ten years older than the female so he will be indicted for a fourth degree felony, which is punishable by up to eighteen months in prison. 

More important than the potential prison term is the sexual registration requirements associated with the offense. Unlawful Sexual Conduct with a Minor falls under one of the specific violations outlined in chapter 2950 of the Ohio Revised Code and is considered a sexually oriented offense. Unlawful Sexual Conduct with a Minor is categorized as a Tier I sexual offense which carries the least severe sexual registration requirements. If convicted as charged, Simpson would be required to register for fifteen years.

The good news for Simpson is that the government is required to show he was reckless with regard to the female's age. Simpson indicated the girl stated she was twenty years old through her online profile. Simpson admitted that he thought she "looked young" but believed she was between sixteen and eighteen years of age. The legal age of consent in Ohio is sixteen years old. In the event the judge or jury decides Simpson was being reasonable when he thought she was sixteen to eighteen years of age, he should be found not guilty of this charge. 

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