I am a mother of four, one of which is a daughter who is 13 about to turn 14 in April. Yesterday, due to a situation with my daughter and a boy who is 17 about to turn 18, I was informed by a detective of the "Romeo & Juliet" law that apparently took effect in 2007. There are a great many of us who never heard of this law until yesterday, and many of us who are completely outraged and disgusted!
I do not consent to my daughter having a relationship with someone that much older than her, and I have done everything in my power to stop all contact between them. However, when I contacted the police for help with the problem, I was told that there was nothing they could do and that it was not illegal because of the Romeo & Juliet law. This is absolutely disgusting! This law makes it legal for an adult to have a relationship with a child, and it takes away a parent's right to stop it from happening. Parents have lost so many of their rights to controlling what their children are allowed to do, and this is just over the top!
As a mother, it should be up to me to decide if it's acceptable for my child to have any type of relationship with someone that much older. I do not condone my 14 year old having any type of relationship with an 18 year old, and I shouldn't be forced to sit by and watch it happen! This law just makes statutory rape acceptable and legal.
We need to change this law and give the parents back the right to control who their child is allowed to have a relationship with. The legal age of consent being 16 was reasonable, but 14 is not! A 14 year old is still a CHILD and should not be given the right to make decisions like this for themselves. Basically this law condones 14 year old children and 18 year old adults to have sexual relationships, and then the parents are left to deal with the consequences. How many 14 year old children have come home pregnant? How many 14 year old children are being exploited by young adults who would-be child molesters? This is completely disgusting and needs to be changed!
Many states have these laws, not just Indiana. Some states have different provisions for the age gap - with some being only 2 years and other being as much as 5 years!!!! For those who live in other states, check your local laws to see if your state has the same disgusting law in effect!
To read more about the "Romeo & Juliet" law in Indiana, here is a link: http://indianalawblog.com/archives/2007/07/ind_law_new_law_3.html