What is Carnal Knowledge?

carnal knowledge

What is carnal knowledge? In criminal law, the term carnal knowledge can refer to different things. In general, it means intercourse with another human being, but it does not necessarily mean sexual intercourse itself is illegal. Some jurisdictions have defined carnal knowledge to include specific sexual acts such as contact between the penis and vagina, or slight penetration of the female sex organs. Other jurisdictions leave the definition up to the courts, taking into consideration changing standards of sexuality in society.

Carnal knowledge is defined by medieval canon law as the intimacy between two human beings. It cancels out the intellectual and spiritual understanding of the two individuals involved. Tertullian said that the flesh was the seat of the soul, and so if the two people had carnal knowledge, the body would be the brain’s primary source of knowledge. The sentence is the same for both, although the punishment may differ. A lawyer will know the defenses and how to challenge the elements of carnal knowledge.

A felony conviction for carnal knowledge of a child can affect your career and reputation for years. Additionally, if you are convicted of carnal knowledge of a child, you must register as a sex offender and face extensive restrictions on your freedom. There are also severe punishments for a subsequent offense, including life in prison. You should also know the consequences before you decide to engage in sex with a child.