Sexual assault charges can be brought for a number of different accusations. In general, a person can be charged with sexual assault if a person subjects another to sexual touching that is offensive and unwanted. Sexual assault laws are on the books at both the state and federal levels, and the nature of the crime will determine which rule of law has been violated. Charges can be brought as both felonies and misdemeanors.
Needless to say, all forms of sexual assault accusations are serious and can result in severe penalties upon conviction. More serious charges can result if a defendant used a deadly weapon, if date rape was involved, if a victim suffered a serious injury, or if the victim was threatened with death, kidnapping or future retaliation.
That’s why it is imperative to retain the services of a skilled sexual assault attorney as soon as you are aware that you are either being investigated or have been arrested.
Three primary sexual assault defenses
There are many possible defenses that a sexual assault attorney can use to defend a client, but in most cases, they will employ one of three possible primary defenses.
Innocence. It’s the most obvious and straightforward defense, and it works best when a defendant has a credible and sound alibi that can be supported by eyewitnesses and evidence.
Consent. It is also possible to argue that while a sex act actually took place, the victim’s words and actions made it a consensual act. When consent is used as a defense, a prosecutor must not only prove that the sex act took place, but that it was against the will of the victim. A defense attorney will try to introduce evidence that casts doubt on the claim that the act was unwanted.
Mentally incompetent. A defendant must be able to understand and comprehend the nature of their actions in a sexual assault situation. When they are unable to do so, the arguments for understanding the consequences are weakened to the point that a defendant may be treated with more leniency.
The Law Office of Maverick Ray serves clients in Houston, Pasadena and other nearby Texas communities.