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Opinion - Saratoga D. A. ignores boys in rape statement

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In a statement released to the press and public yesterday concerning the statutory rape case of a Johnstown police officer, Saratoga County D.A. James Murphy, the acting prosecutor, is quoted as saying:

As an adult he should know better than to have sex with a minor and that is exactly why the statute is written, to protect young girls.

Mr. Murphy has been a district attorney for a long time and should know better than to use sexist language in making press releases about statutory rape, particularly since there have been high profile cases in upstate New York involving adult woman and young men and particularly since the New York State Penal Code is gender neutral.

The penal code concerning statutory rape does not mention the gender of the the victim. It specifically states that the rapist can be a male or female. It reads as follows:

ยง 130.25 Rape in the third degree.
A person is guilty of rape in the third degree when:
1. He or she engages in sexual intercourse with another person who is
incapable of consent by reason of some factor other than being less than
seventeen years old;
2. Being twenty-one years old or more, he or she engages in sexual
intercourse with another person less than seventeen years old; or
3. He or she engages in sexual intercourse with another person without
such person's consent where such lack of consent is by reason of some
factor other than incapacity to consent.
Rape in the third degree is a class E felony.

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