On August 4, 2017, a White County man was arrested and charged with soliciting a minor to engage in sexual activity. According to Spartalive.com, the warrant reportedly alleges that the man solicited an act that, if completed, would have constituted the rape of a child. He has a $150,000 bond.
Soliciting a minor to engage in conduct that would constitute the rape of a child is a Class B felony. T.C.A. §§ 39-13-522, -528. The sentencing range for a Class B felony is eight to thirty years and depends on one’s classification. T.C.A. § 40-35-112. The fine could be as high as $25,000, plus court costs and restitution to the victim. T.C.A. § 40-35-111.
Interestingly, the solicitation statute requires that the person being solicited either be less than eighteen years of age or be a law enforcement officer posing as a minor. Arguably, this particular statute does not apply when the person being solicited is an an adult who is pretending to be a minor but is not a law enforcement officer (e.g., a parent). Parents who know someone is trying to exploit their minor children should contact law enforcement rather than try to do an investigation by themselves and possibly let someone off the hook on a technicality. People charged with serious crimes, such as solicitation of a minor, should definitely contact a lawyer to find any possible defenses.