The state’s legislature amended a law in 1980, believing that the law inadvertently outlawed some forms of consensual sex between adults. That amendment created a legal loophole — one that sat unnoticed until 2003, when a District Court judge interpreted it to mean that paying for consensual sex was not a criminal offense in Rhode Island, not if it took place privately indoors. It took the state until 2009 to close the loophole.
The state’s little legal accident was a bit embarrassing. But it did have a silver lining: it could serve as a “natural experiment,” allowing researchers to estimate causal effects of decriminalizing sex work.
[…] The authors found evidence that, after decriminaliztion, the size of the indoor sex market increased — as expected — and prices commensurately fell.
More surprising was the finding that forcible rape offenses fell by 31 percent in Rhode Island from 2004 to 2009, as decriminalized indoor sex work scaled up in the state. This translates to 824 fewer reported rapes. The majority of the reduction in rapes came from Providence, where the state’s sex work is concentrated.
A 24 year old acting graduate living in Scotland, but I'm a Yorkshire lad. I have a huge passion for films, especially indie, arthouse and the classics - my film blog can be found at Popcorn Scorn. I like lots and lots and lots of TV shows, Woody Allen, libertarianism, tweed, funk music, women in hats, awful jokes and living a paleo lifestyle.