While prostitution is legal in some areas of the country, it is a crime in the state of Minnesota. The severity of that crime depends on many factors, including the location of the act, the age of the participants and whether or not the incident constitutes a repeat offense. Let's take a more in-depth look at the prostitution laws in Minnesota.
Minnesota Statute defines prostitution as: “hiring, offering to hire, or agreeing to hire another individual to engage in sexual penetration or sexual contact, or being hired, offering to be hired, or agreeing to be hired by another individual to engage in sexual penetration or sexual contact.”
Engaging in prostitution in Minnesota is a misdemeanor, punishable by a jail sentence of up to 90 days and a fine of no more than $1,000.
However, the crime escalates to a gross misdemeanor for any individual who has been previously convicted of prostitution in the last two years. Acts of prostitution that occur in public are also charged as gross misdemeanors, even if neither party has a prior conviction. Gross misdemeanors carry a penalty of up to one year in jail and a fine of $3,000. If the event took place in a vehicle, a person could receive a notation of conviction on their driving record. The first notation is private data, meaning it can only be viewed by law enforcement. Subsequent notations may be accessible by the public.
The age of the participants involved figures prominently into prostitution cases as well. Engaging in prostitution with a minor (under the age of 18) is a felony offense. If the minor is 16 or 17 years of age, the accused could face penalties of up to five years in prison, a $10,000 fine or both. The penalties increase to 10 years and $20,000 if the minor is between the ages of 13 and 16 and they double again to 20 years in prison and $40,000 if the minor is under the age of 13.
If you have been charged with violating prostitution laws in Minnesota, you need experienced legal counsel. Contact Attorney Eric J. Olson for vigorous defense and unrivaled results.