Alexandria Sex Crimes Lawyer
Sex crimes can include a variety of offenses which range in severity. Rape is the most severe of sex-related offenses. Other sex crimes include sexual relations with a minor and sexual battery. Each offense carries their own respective sentencing guidelines. If you are charged with any sex-related offenses, contact a skilled sex crimes lawyer right away. An Alexandria sex crimes lawyer could help you build a defense you can feel confident presenting during trial.
What Defines Rape?
According to § 18.2-61 of the Code of Virginia, there are three distinct ways in which a person can be guilty of the crime of rape. A person may be convicted of rape if they have sexual intercourse with a person:
- Against their will by force, threat, or intimidation
- Against their will by through incapacitation or diminished mental capacity
- Under the age of 13
If the defendant was over the age of 18 at the time of the alleged rape, a conviction will trigger a mandatory punishment of life in prison. If serving a life sentence for rape, it is possible to petition to court to suspend the remainder of one’s sentence after serving a minimum of 40 years in a state prison. A seasoned Alexandria sex crimes lawyer will know the adequate procedures to assist in these procedures.
Rape of a Spouse
If a person is found guilty of rape, and the alleged victim is the defendant’s spouse, it is possible for the court to defer prosecution under the condition that the defendant completes counseling or therapy. If deferring prosecution in this manner, the court must take into account the opinion of the spousal accuser, and decide that such action is in that person’s best interest. That is, even if the spouse wants the prosecution to defer adjudication of the defendant, the court must believe that it is in their best interest as well.
What is Carnal Knowledge?
Carnal knowledge is defined by statute as sexual intercourse, cunnilingus, fellatio, anilingus, anal intercourse, and animate and inanimate object sexual penetration. If a person engages in such behavior with a person under the age of 14, it will be considered a Class 4 felony upon conviction. If the defendant in such a case is more than 3 years older than the alleged victim, a conviction for this crime will be treated as a Class 6 felony rather than a Class 4 felony.
Difference Between Sexual Battery and Aggravated Sexual Battery
According to § 18.2-67.4, a person who sexually abuses another by force, threat, intimidation or deceit is guilty of the crime of sexual battery. It is also possible to commit sexual battery by sexually abusing the same person more than once, or by abusing two people within a two year period. Sexual Battery is a Class 1 misdemeanor.
How Do Aggravated Sexual Battery Offenses Differ?
According to § 18.2-67.3 there are several factors that can raise a sexual battery charge to the more severe crime of aggravated sexual battery. A defendant may be convicted of aggravated sexual battery if:
- The accuser is a minor under the age of 13
- The accuser was considered helpless or incapacitated
- The defendant is a step-parent, grandparent, or step-grandparent and the alleged victim was a minor
- Force, threat, or intimidation are used and the accuser is a minor
- Serious bodily harm or mental injury is caused
- A weapon is used
Aggravated sexual battery carries a mandatory minimum sentence of one-year imprisonment and a maximum penalty of 20 years in a state prison. It also can result in a fine of up to $100,000, making it imperative to contact an Alexandria sex crimes lawyer as soon as possible.
Contact an Alexandria Sex Crimes Attorney
Upon conviction for rape, a defendant will be sentenced to a mandatory minimum prison sentence of five years. If the conviction is for sexual intercourse with a child under the age of 13, and the defendant was more than three years older than the accuser, the mandatory minimum sentence will be raised to 25 years in a state prison.
A conviction for a sex crime in Alexandria could have very serious consequences. You do not have to face such a charge alone. If you are charged with any sex crime or related offense in, an Alexandria sex crimes lawyer could help.