November 11th, 2017

Attempt to clear up some of the legal details connected with the Moore accusations

Commenter “Gospace” writes:

[Moore] took ”No” for an answer. That’s the takeaway. No rape, no assault, he understands the meaning of ”No”.

But that’s irrelevant where an underage person is concerned. That’s what the word “consent” in the phrase “age of consent” is all about. As I wrote a while back:

The child cannot consent to that which fails to protect that child; the child’s judgement is colored both by the greater influence of the powerful one [the adult] as well as the fact of the child’s age detracting from a child’s ability to make informed decisions in general.

In the case of the allegations against Moore (ignoring for the moment whether he’s guilty or innocent, and just taking the situation as reported), the 14-year-old girl was under the age of consent in Alabama. Legally, she could neither consent nor refuse; her wishes are irrelevant because propositioning such a person or engaging in any sexual acts with her is an offense. According to her description as reported in the WaPo, here’s what happened:

Moore chatted with [the 14-year-old after meeting her] and asked for her phone number, she says. Days later, she says, he picked her up around the corner from her house in Gadsden, drove her about 30 minutes to his home in the woods, told her how pretty she was and kissed her. On a second visit, she says, he took off her shirt and pants and removed his clothes. He touched her over her bra and underpants, she says, and guided her hand to touch him over his underwear.

“I wanted it over with — I wanted out,” she remembers thinking. “Please just get this over with. Whatever this is, just get it over.” Corfman says she asked Moore to take her home, and he did.

So had she been 16 and we could speak meaningfully of whether she “consented” or not, she consented to give her phone number, consented to date him, consented to go to his home, consented to kiss him, and then consented to have another date. On that second date, it is unclear whether the disrobing was consensual, but it’s quite clear that at some point during the touchings, it became nonconsensual and she conveyed that to him and he complied with her wishes.

But as I said, with a fourteen-year-old consent cannot be given or withheld. The very acts themselves are an offense because the older person has a responsibility to not engage in sexual acts with a person of that age whether they are consensual or not.

It seems that what Moore is alleged to have done would have been actionable both civilly and criminally, had it been reported at the time or in a timely fashion, but it was not. You can find a definition of the crime involved here (although I have no idea whether this was a crime in 1979, when it is alleged to have occurred, and I have no idea whether if it were to be tried today the 1979 laws or today’s laws would be operative, although my guess is that it would be 1979’s):

Section 13A-6-69 (Enticing child to enter vehicle, house, etc., for immoral purposes) It shall be unlawful for any person with lascivious intent to entice, allure, persuade or invite, or attempt to entice, allure, persuade or invite, any child under 16 years of age to enter any vehicle, room, house, office or other place for the purpose of proposing to such child the performance of an act of sexual intercourse or an act which constitutes the offense of sodomy or for the purpose of proposing the fondling or feeling of the sexual or genital parts of such child or the breast of such child, or for the purpose of committing an aggravated assault on such child, or for the purpose of proposing that such child fondle or feel the sexual or genital parts of such person.

In addition, based on these allegations it is possible that he could have been charged with sexual abuse in the second degree:

Section 13A-6-67 (Sexual abuse in the second degree)…being 19 years old or older, subjects another person to sexual contact who is less than 16 years old, but more than 12 years old…

(Again, it’s not clear whether this was actionable in 1979, but my guess is that it was).

Note, however, that I wrote it’s possible that “sexual abuse in the second degree” might apply. Why might it not apply? Because I can’t find an Alabama definition of “sexual contact,” so I’m not certain whether clothed fondling (that is what was alleged) would apply, or even it has to be something more extreme.

There’s also a potential problem with the charge of “Enticing child to enter vehicle, house, etc., for immoral purposes.” Does that statute apply to only naked touching of genitals, or does it include clothed touching?

Let’s say, though, for the sake of discussion, that the alleged acts were indeed actionable then. But would they be actionable now, after all these years? In other words, has the statute of limitations run out? I believe that, based on this, someone who had committed the alleged acts in 1979 could be charged even today [emphasis mine]:

Although the civil SOL [statute of limitations] is very short, Alabama gives prosecutors a lot of time to file violent or childhood sexual abuse [criminal] charges. The criminal statutes of limitations vary depending on the severity of the offense. The criminal statutes of limitations include (although again, it depends on the finer points of the definitions of things such as “sexual abuse”):

No statute of limitations: rape, violent sexual abuse, sexual abuse with the threat of violence, and any sexual abuse of a victim under the age of 16,
Other felony sexual abuse: three years, and
Misdemeanor abuse: one year.

So there you have it.

This, of course, only has to do with the courts—the actual courts, not the court of public opinion, which seems to have quite different standards.

24 Responses to “Attempt to clear up some of the legal details connected with the Moore accusations”

  1. Ymar Sakar Says:

    When are you going to talk about the F E M, Neo?

    Flat Earth Model. I hear it has been displacing other conspiracy stuff lately.

    May be the next “big thing” when Hollywood calms down on hunting down girls and boys.

  2. expat Says:

    I have another question: Did he even know how old she was? It might be hard to tell a 14 almost 15 year old from a just turned 16 without any info about them. Were they introduced by her 9th grade teacher?

    The specific age of the girls interests me less than why he was so interested in younger girls in general. There is something really weird about a 30+ guy going after teens he doesn’t know.

  3. neo-neocon Says:


    Ignorance of the 14-year-old girl’s age is not a defense under the law. I certainly hope the Wapo authenticated her age, though, and authenticated that they actually met in that courthouse or could have met at the time. Haven’t read a word about that.

    I think it’s a bit odd for a 32-year-old to go after 17- or 18-year-olds, but it’s actually very very common and somewhat old-fashioned. It’s not my cup of tea—and I wouldn’t suggest it to either party—but no one’s asking me and it’s not a crime of any kind whatsoever.

    I really don’t care all that much about 32-year-olds and teenagers of legal age, as long as there is consent. It doesn’t disqualify anyone for office in my book.

    I never cared for Moore at all, though, long before this. I was disappointed when he won the primary.

  4. expat Says:

    I don’t like him either. I could see an attraction growing out of some sort of relationship, but picking up young girls you don’t know is a different thing.

  5. Gospace Says:

    Since I was mentioned, let’s take a look at the totality of what we know, based on 4 testimonies.

    1. As mentioned before, he takes no for an answer. All 4 agree with that. Pattern of behavior established.

    2. 3 of 4 quite clearly infer he moves very slowly, and isn’t aggressive in sexual matters. 1 of 4, the youngest and only actual accuser, implies otherwise. Pattern of behavior is established by the other three which cast doubt upon the accuser’s testimony- he’s not aggressive, and doesn’t paw at them.

    3. He dates the 3 non-accusers in public. Pattern of behavior, he likes going out and being seen with them. It’s an ego boost to be seen with a younger woman. The accuser he sees only in private. Again, pattern of behavior established by the other three diminish believability of the accuser.

    Things we don’t know for sure, but are circulating around.

    1. The accuser has made multiple false sexual abuse accusations against others. If true, then all credibility is gone. This may not be allowed as testimony in court even if true. Something akin to you can’t point out a rape victim was a prostitute. It is allowed in the court of public opinion.

    2. WAPO offered money for evidence Judge Moore committed unlawful or morally reprehensible acts. And that such offers were recorded by at least one person. If people come forward and testify to that, that would be admissible in court, and certainly would influence the court of public opinion.

    Why is WAPO publishing this now? Well, let’s take a look at the history of sexual abuse allegations. After the first public allegation Bill Clinton was a serial abuser, women came out of the wood work with very similar allegations. All of which WAPO said at the time were not believable and nothing but Republican smears. Out of court settlements by Bill Clinton say otherwise. Once the first allegations against Weinstein, or the now to many to keep track of Hollywood abusers, women (and MEN) came out of the woodwork, and the rate of their coming out seems to be increasing. So, let’s throw a story out- Judge Moore initiates sexual contact with UNDERAGE WOMEN! As anyone and everyone knows who’s dealt with such a man, it’s never a one off proposition; there are always more. They were and are desperately waiting for other accusers to come forward with hopefully credible proof that Judge Moore performed unlawful underage sexual acts with them. They’re looking for the time period of 1974 when he left active duty until 1985 when he married at age 38. 11 years- he had to have done something during those 11 years! If he were indeed a sex pervert. It’s been several days now. Crickets. Nothing. No one is coming out of the woodwork. Each day that no one else comes forward to say “Hey, he did the same to me!”is another day where the accusation becomes less believable.

    Do I believe the accuser? Nope. Not a bit. Her story would actually be more believable if WAPO hadn’t published accounts of his dating the other 3 women. Their stories about Moore’s behavior undermine hers. A lot.

  6. neo-neocon Says:


    The story that the WaPo offered money is also uncorroborated.

    Wheels within wheels.

  7. parker Says:

    One, let us see the election results. Two let us see where this leads.We’ll see.sooner or later.

  8. Gospace Says:

    neo-neocon Says:
    November 11th, 2017 at 5:35 pm

    The story that the WaPo offered money is also uncorroborated.

    Wheels within wheels.

    Which is why I said “Things we don’t know for sure, but are circulating around.”

  9. Frog Says:

    This is all the result of women being in the majority.
    Nothing but allegations.
    Gossip and allegations. It is what women do.
    It matters not whether it is Carlos Danger, Weinstein, or Roy Moore who is at issue. With ex-Mr. Abedin we at least had some proof, but no more, just the unfounded claims of middle-aged women as to what “happened” a generation ago.
    I am thoroughly revolted.
    The Anti-American Activities Committee at least heard sworn testimony, with witnesses allowed their right against self-incrimination.
    Now we have endless, unfounded allegations as to what someone might allegedly have done 30 years ago, accepted as fact! As fact! By the Bezos-owned WaPo, among others.
    It just goes on and on.
    The feminazis aka Democrats love it, even when they eat their own (Weinstein). They learned to turn the hacks of Podesta and the DNC, showing disgusting conduct, into an anti-Russia distraction, against Trump, and now they practice more preposterous tactics of personal destruction and character assassination based on “Once he touched me in an ‘inappropriate” part of my body.”

    Kindly refer back to the UVa rape preposterousness printed in Rolling Stone. Refer back to the Duke lacrosse “scandal” and the torture the lacrosse players went through based on the lies of a prostitute.

    This sh*t has gotta stop. Otherwise we will end up with Robespierre and the guillotine.

    It is what happens when we have too many women.

    Reminds me of a joke likening marriage to drinking martinis: One is not enough; two is too many.

  10. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    Two of the women have deep connections on the Left.

    Mark Levin points out the obvious question; WAPO claims their reporter heard rumors: two weeks later they’ve found all 4 women none of whom ever met the other…

    That level of claimed investigatory expertise strains credulity.

  11. parker Says:


    I rarely make a cocktail (not a pun) but when I do I make martinis. Gin, vermouth, shaken, and a twist of lemon peel. Guess what? We each drink two and we have been married 48 years. 😉

    I understand your skepticism, but I also know many females are reluctant to speak up about unwanted behaviors for a variety of reasons. 30 plus years later at a convenient time when someone you consider a political enemy is involved does not pass my smell test. Abuse of women and children is a terrible thing. It is also a terrible thing when false accusations occur. In those cases the person making the false accusation should be convicted and sentenced to a penalty equal to what the crime she/he falsely accused would receive.

  12. Gospace Says:

    Maybe the governor should move the election back to it’s original date of next November and give both parties a chance for a do-over in their primaries.

  13. Dave Says:

    Am I a bad person to think as an alleged sexual predator Moore is quite a gentleman?

  14. Dave Says:

    Maybe that is because after a month of hearing weird stories involving perverts in Hollywood it is a breath of fresh air to hear about an alleged predator who would respect the wishes of his victims to as far as asking permission from a victim’s parents to go out with the victim…

  15. Frog Says:

    I am not a skeptic.
    I am deeply troubled, indeed outraged at the sudden rush of women making unproveable allegations about remote “inappropriate” conduct by men on the Right, Weinstein and some Hollywood fags excluded.
    The Hollywood stuff is a separate struggle over $ and power.
    But the psychologically wounded female stuff, all verdicts without trials or even hearings, is scarier than Alice in Wonderland with the Red Queen. We are talking America the Beautiful here, and it is being snuffed out because of allegations of inappropriate touching?

    The WaPo is the new National Inquirer? What does its owner, Bezos, want?

    Remember, Gates, Bezos and Buffett, three men, are more wealthy than the bottom 50th percentile of Americans!

  16. AesopFan Says:

    Frog Says:
    November 11th, 2017 at 9:12 pm
    The WaPo is the new National Inquirer? What does its owner, Bezos, want?
    * * *

    The National Enquirer was right about John Edwards.
    Right now, their track record is better than WaPo

  17. Lowell Says:

    As I remember the Anita Hill hearing, what really happened was that she WAS verbally abused with sexual innuendos, but NOT by Clarence Thomas, but by a subsequent boss. Janet Napolitano was instrumental in muddying up the timeline of Hill and her “supporters”.
    Ever since then, I’ve always wondered about whether accusations of sexual abuse may be true, but directed toward the wrong perp. The accuser gets all the details right, but she just changes the abuser to someone who is the political enemy of the moment.

  18. LindaF Says:

    That age is why I call that story bullshit. It’s SO convenient, that – in other alleged stories, he carefully avoided breaching that age of consent – so, as a result, a 14-year-old accuser pops up.

    Statute of limitations bars further action on his accusers?

    Presto! A new accuser appears, who is magically just young enough that SoL doesn’t apply.

    How convenient.

  19. blert Says:

    We’ve seen this play before: Mr. Cain, 2012.

    It eventuated that EVERY single gal was a liar against Cain.

    In the present instance, the players are linked to Moore’s opponent, so far as we know… starting with Hillary’s sign language interpreter, 2016.

  20. R.C. Says:

    Re: Disparity of Age:

    I’ve long thought there ought to be some kind of well-known and widely-culturally accepted formula for what qualifies as Cool or Sketchy or Nasty, when it comes to older guy involved with younger gal.

    But I’ve never been able to derive exactly what it should be.

    For example,

    Where M = age of Male,
    and F = age of Female,
    let the dividing-line between Cool and Sketchy be:

    F = M – ((M – 13) / 2)

    In this system M of 50 dating F of 31.5 is “Cool,” but M of 50 dating F of 30 is getting “Sketchy.”

    Likewise, it allows a 20-year-old guy to be involved with a 16-and-a-half-year-old without it being “Sketchy,” but calling it “Sketchy” if she just turned 16.

    Seems about right.


  21. n.n Says:

    I believe that Moore preferred to date young women, but other than this single event, there is no evidence that he attempted to date underage girls. Given that he does understand boundaries, and that he does not have a history of crossing them, it seems that the likely scenario is that Moore did date the 14-year old girl, but upon discovery of her status cut the courtship short.

  22. Matt_SE Says:

    Nope, it’s all lies. Until there’s rock-solid evidence, I refuse to entertain the fantasies of the left.

  23. Dave Says:

    That also explains why she still holds a grudge against him, because he rejected her…all just speculations of course

  24. William Graves Says:

    Good analysis, two weaknesses:

    “The statute of limitations can be extended buythe legislature.

    As applied in a particular case, as long as the original statute of limitations has not expired, the plaintive gets the benefit of the extension.

    However, a cause of action once barred by the statute of limitations cannot be revived by an amended statute of limitations.

    I expect the result is the same in a criminal case.”


    The laws in place in 1979 did not define sexual assault the same way today’s laws do. I tried to research it, but it would take a full law library in Kentucky to figure it out. I seem to recall, that in my state, many of the offenses cited were not offenses in 1979?

    But that’s not the point, anyway. None of these so-called cases will ever come to trial because they are politically motivated and will be dropped the day after the election. The real question is who will vote for the guy?

    There’s an awful lot of circumstantial evidence accumulating as we speak. Nevertheless, if it went to trial, all the accusers would be cross-examined on their whole personal sexual histories and tied up in court proceedings for years. So this is about the vote.

    There is a way forward. The governor can postpone the election, and the Republican Party can put another name forward. Let’s see what happens.

About Me

Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.

Monthly Archives


Ace (bold)
AmericanDigest (writer’s digest)
AmericanThinker (thought full)
Anchoress (first things first)
AnnAlthouse (more than law)
AtlasShrugs (fearless)
AugeanStables (historian’s task)
Baldilocks (outspoken)
Barcepundit (theBrainInSpain)
Beldar (Texas lawman)
BelmontClub (deep thoughts)
Betsy’sPage (teach)
Bookworm (writingReader)
Breitbart (big)
ChicagoBoyz (boyz will be)
Contentions (CommentaryBlog)
DanielInVenezuela (against tyranny)
DeanEsmay (conservative liberal)
Donklephant (political chimera)
Dr.Helen (rights of man)
Dr.Sanity (thinking shrink)
DreamsToLightening (Asher)
EdDriscoll (market liberal)
Fausta’sBlog (opinionated)
GayPatriot (self-explanatory)
HadEnoughTherapy? (yep)
HotAir (a roomful)
InFromTheCold (once a spook)
InstaPundit (the hub)
JawaReport (the doctor is Rusty)
LegalInsurrection (law prof)
RedState (conservative)
Maggie’sFarm (centrist commune)
MelaniePhillips (formidable)
MerylYourish (centrist)
MichaelTotten (globetrotter)
MichaelYon (War Zones)
Michelle Malkin (clarion pen)
Michelle Obama's Mirror (reflections)
MudvilleGazette (milblog central)
NoPasaran! (behind French facade)
NormanGeras (principled leftist)
OneCosmos (Gagdad Bob’s blog)
PJMedia (comprehensive)
PointOfNoReturn (Jewish refugees)
Powerline (foursight)
ProteinWisdom (wiseguy)
QandO (neolibertarian)
RachelLucas (in Italy)
RogerL.Simon (PJ guy)
SecondDraft (be the judge)
SeekerBlog (inquiring minds)
SisterToldjah (she said)
Sisu (commentary plus cats)
Spengler (Goldman)
TheDoctorIsIn (indeed)
Tigerhawk (eclectic talk)
VictorDavisHanson (prof)
Vodkapundit (drinker-thinker)
Volokh (lawblog)
Zombie (alive)

Regent Badge