By law, rape means that somebody has had nonconsensual sexual intercourse with another person. There is another variation of rape that you have probably heard of: statutory rape. This means that it is unlawful to have sexual intercourse of any kind with a minor under the age of consent. Though this varies from state to state, it is usually 16-18.
In many rape cases, you will see forcible rape, which is when somebody uses threats of violence to accomplish intercourse with another. In these cases, the defendant usually prevents a victim from consenting by giving them alcohol or drugs, poses as an official and threatens to arrest them until they agree to sex, or takes advantage of their disabilities to force them into sex. There are degrees of rape, which constitute how serious the crime is and the punishments that go along with it.
Examples of Both
Here is an example scenario of rape: A woman is sleeping in her apartment when, all of a sudden, somebody breaks in. Not only have they committed a crime of breaking and entering, they also proceed to rape the woman by threatening her life.
Here is an example scenario of statutory rape: A 12-year-old is talking to an older man on the Internet. The man has asked her time and time again what her age is, and she has complied. They agree to meet and he goes through with it. If sexual acts occur, then he is guilty of statutory rape as well as other crimes.
At the center of these crimes lies the question: Did the victim actually give consent? What if you have been accused of rape or statutory rape and you can prove that consent was given or that you were misled? For instance, what happens if a minor claims they are actually 20 and has a fake I.D. but they are actually 16? This is a common scenario that happens many times in California, putting you at risk of crimes if charges are pressed.
If you have been accused of rape or statutory rape but you know that you are not guilty of the crime, you have options. Luckily for you, we can help in this dire time of need as you build your defense. Let us help you every step of the way, and call us for more information.