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Types of Sex Crimes in Ohio

— October 7, 2020

In Ohio, if you are convicted of any sex crime, you are considered a sex offender. As a registered sex offender, you may be subjected to various restrictions.

There are many different types of sex crimes under Ohio law. Many of the crimes deal with illegal and forced sexual conduct against another person. Being convicted of a sex crime can wreak havoc on a person’s career and private life, as they will most likely not only face severe penalties, but among other restrictions, will also have their name added to a registry of sex offenders. The registry is in the public domain and accessible to all. The more common sex crimes in Ohio include:


Importuning is the soliciting of a minor under 13 years of age to engage in sexual activity with the offender. Importuning can include prostitution as well as any sexual texting or social media messaging, for example. Importuning can be charged as a felony crime even on a first offense, according to Ohio Revised Code 2907.07.


According to Ohio Revised Code 2907.08, voyeurism is defined as “committing trespass or otherwise surreptitiously invade the privacy of another, to spy or eavesdrop upon another” for the purpose of sexual gratification of the offender. This can also include videotaping or photographing others, without their consent, for sexual gratification.

Public Exposure and Indecency in Ohio

As per Ohio Revised Code 2907.09, public indecency is an offense when those subjected to indecent exposure are not in a household relationship with the offender. This can include exposure of genitals as well as masturbation and other sexual conduct. If the act involves public exposure to minors, the charge will generally be more serious. If an offender has previous convictions for this type of crime, they may be charged with a felony. 

Sexual Imposition

Sexual imposition generally implies sexual contact, for example, touching another person’s erogenous area, without consent. This could be their genitals, thighs, buttocks, or breasts, as well as other areas. Ohio Revised Code 2907.06 states that an accuser’s testimony alone is not sufficient in order to convict an accused person, and that generally, other supporting evidence is required.

Gross Sexual Imposition

Gross sexual imposition is a more serious offense than sexual imposition and carries higher penalties. It describes sexual contact with a person as well as a child under 13 years of age, against their will, or when they are under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or otherwise unable to consent. Gross sexual imposition can also include threats of physical violence. Gross sexual imposition, unlike sexual imposition, is typically charged as a felony as per Ohio Revised Code 2907.05.

Sexual Battery in Ohio

Sexual battery is a type of sexual assault that generally includes coercing someone into unwanted sexual conduct, such as touching or sexual intercourse. Ohio Revised Code 2907.03 states that sexual battery typically carries a third-degree felony charge. 


Rape is any form of unwanted sexual conduct, usually sexual intercourse, when the alleged offender impairs, forces, or deceives the person into sex, according to Ohio Revised Code 2907.02. The alleged offender can also be convicted of rape when engaging in sexual conduct with someone under 13 years old, or who has a mental or physical condition and is unable to consent. Rape is a first-degree felony.

Unlawful Sexual Conduct with a Minor

As per Ohio Revised Code 2907.04, unlawful sexual conduct with a minor is defined as an offender who is 18 years and older engaging in sexual conduct with a minor who is between 13 years old and 16 years old. The offender, in order to be charged, must know of the age of the minor or must be shown to be reckless in that regard.

Prostitution in Ohio

Under Ohio Revised Codes 2907.21, 2907.22, and 2907.23, the procurement of a prostitute, promoting prostitution, and compelling prostitution are all sex crimes that may be charged as a misdemeanor or felony, depending on the case and whether an offender committed previous sex crimes.

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Disseminating or Displaying Matter Harmful to Juveniles

Selling or otherwise disseminating any obscene or harmful material to juveniles, as well as displaying such material in a commercial establishment, is a sex crime, according to Ohio Revised Codes 2907.31 and 2907.311.

This list of some of the more common and more serious types of sex crimes can be found in the Ohio Revised Code, Chapter 2907, entitled “Sex Offenses.” Chapter 2907 lists all sex crimes punishable by law in Ohio. 

The Penalties for Sex Crimes in Ohio

Penalties for all types of sex crimes can be considerable. However, if you have been convicted of any sex crimes previously, or you have been charged with any of the types of crimes that are considered to be more serious in the eyes of the law, you have the option of consulting with a sex crimes criminal defense lawyer. The most serious types of sex crimes under Ohio law include:

  • Sexual battery
  • Rape
  • Sexual assault
  • Murder or aggravated murder with sexual motivation

These sex crimes can have severe punishments, including considerable fines, as well as lengthy jail times, especially if you have been convicted of any sex offenses previously. 

The Three Tiers of Sex Offenses in Ohio

Ohio has three tiers of sex offender registration. While Tier I deals with those who committed minor sexual crimes, requiring an offender to register once a year for 15 years, Tier II and Tier III are reserved for the more serious sex offenses. 

Tier II offenders must register every 180 days for a term of 25 years. Tier III offenders have to register every 90 days for the rest of their lives, and unlike the other two tiers, are subject to a community/neighbor notification provision. Public mailings to those living within a 1,250 feet range of a Tier III offender may also occur.

Sex offender registration details can include:

  • Address
  • Place of work
  • Phone number
  • Car registration
  • Social media profiles
  • Email addresses

A county sheriff’s office has to be immediately notified when any of these details change. 

In Ohio, if you are convicted of any sex crime, you are considered a sex offender. As a registered sex offender, you may be subjected to various restrictions, including which job you are able to work in and where you are allowed to live. 

However, a criminal defense lawyer can help you fight for your rights. Having an attorney by your side who is familiar with Ohio sex crime laws can be helpful for your case.

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