Legal history was created in the Home Circuit Court last week when two schoolgirls appeared on charges of having sexual intercourse with minors.
Last year, the girls and two boys, who were all 15 years old, left school and headed for a friend’s house where they had sex.
All four were charged after one of the girls’ mother discovered what had happened and reported the matter to the police.
They all pleaded guilty to the charge of having sexual intercourse with minors under the age of 16, and last Friday, Justice Lennox Campbell sentenced them to two years’ probation.
Justice Campbell also ordered that they must be supervised by the Probation Department during the two years and that they must attend an educational institution.
A bold move
Attorney-at-law Ricardo Sandcroft, who represented the boys, noted that the decision by the police to charge the girls was a bold move as, normally, it is only the boys who are charged under the Sexual Offences Act of 2009.
“This case should be a warning to all schoolchildren,” Sandcroft told The Sunday Gleaner, as he noted that the law is gender neutral so males and females can be charged.
Sandcroft, who is an expert on child law, further noted that the children could have been given the minimum mandatory sentence for a sexual offence, which is 15 years, but Justice Campbell used his discretion.
“It could not be the intention of Parliament to severely punish children who had sex with other children,” said Sandcroft, as he pointed to other Commonwealth Law jurisdictions where the judges have not been abiding by the mandatory minimum sentence in cases which involve children.