Legalized Prostitution Leads to Fewer Rapes in Rhode Island?

According to the Washington Post’s recent analysis, Rhode Island accidentally legalized prostitution for several years.  This was due to a drafting mistake when the Rhode Island Legislature revised part of the prostitution laws.  According to a study cited by the Post, rape crimes when down when prostitution was legal in Rhode Island. This was from 2003 to 2009.  Some women’s advocates are dismayed and the economists’ study cited in the Post article.  They say prostitution is another form of rape.

The economists who conducted the study were from the National Bureau for Economic Research (NEBR) .  The study was undertaken by  Scott Cunningham of Baylor U. and Manisha Shah of UCLA. This prostitution study contributes to an impassioned, long-running debate about prostitution . The study may be the first quantitative evidence that removing criminal penalties for prostitutes can reduce rape.  It also may curtail sexually transmitted infections (STD’s) in society generally.  The study’s authors note that making prostitution legal might improve working conditions for prostitutes. If prostitutes were having a problem with a client, they could threaten to call the police.  Prostitutes could also demand that their clients use condoms. Additionally, according to supporters of legal prostitution, hookers  have no opportunity to investigagte their clients before their trysts. A regular legalized market for sex, whether online or in a brick-and-mortar establishment, could solve that problem.

Prostitution  is often advertised anonymously over the internet.   Such ads offer “massage” services.  Unfortunately, the police are using Backpages.com and other websites to pose as prostitutes and to arrest people answer their fake ads.  If you or someone you know has been charged with engaging in prostitution, solicting prostitution, or other internet sex crimes, such as possession of child pornography, call a Tough, Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney Right Away.

Max Keller has won countless jury trial cases involving misdemeanors and felonies, sex crimes, and DWI’s. He is a member of the Minnesota Society for Criminal Justice, which only allows the top 50 criminal defense attorneys in the state as members. Max is a frequent speaker at CLE’s and is often asked for advice by other defense attorneys across Minnesota.

Years of Experience: Approx. 20 years
Minnesota Registration Status: Active
Bar & Court Admissions: State of Minnesota Minnesota State Court Minnesota Federal Court 8th Circuit Federal Court of Appeals State of Maryland

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