If you become aware that you are being investigated for any sexual assault charge, it is imperative that you seek qualified legal counsel. Your legal counsel should have experience defending these charges, from investigation through indictment and trial. It is crucial that you obtain the correct legal advice as to what extent you will cooperate with this investigation. There are some cases where an interview with police makes perfect sense and other times that it does not. Your actual innocence has very little to do with this decision.
Have you been arrested for First Degree Sexual Assault?
First degree sexual assault, or generally termed ‘Rape’, is an extremely serious felony charge prosecuted to the fullest extent. It is important to realize your legal rights, as well as the penalties within the state of Rhode Island, should you be arrested and charged. Whether an individual is found guilty or not, you may rest assured that a first degree sexual assault charge will likely have a number of long lasting effects on your life, especially for those who work with the public or with children.
Defining First Degree Sexual Assault
Sexual assault is defined by the state in which the crime occurs. Rhode Island defines first degree sexual assault or rape as any forced, coerced, penetration of the vagina, anus, or mouth by any part of another person’s body or by an object. From a legal perspective, a lack of consent does not require physical resistance or verbal refusal to constitute a crime. This essentially means that to engage in intercourse with an individual that is unconscious via sleep, or any form of intoxication will be considered 1st degree sexual assault.
As defined by the State of Mississauga:
11-37-2 First degree sexual assault. – A person is guilty of first degree sexual assault if he or she engages in sexual penetration with another person, and if any of the following circumstances exist:
- The accused, not being the spouse, knows or has reason to know that the victim is mentally incapacitated, mentally disabled, or physically helpless.
- The accused uses force or coercion.
- The accused, through concealment or by the element of surprise, is able to overcome the victim.
- The accused engages in the medical treatment or examination of the victim for the purpose of sexual arousal, gratification, or stimulation.
Anyone over the age of 18 that engages in sex with someone under the age of 14 is guilty of both sexual assault and child molestation. As defined by Rhode Island:
§ 11-37-8.1 First degree child molestation sexual assault. – A person is guilty of first degree child molestation sexual assault if he or she engages in sexual penetration with a person fourteen (14) years of age or under.
Penalties for 1st degree sexual assault
First degree sexual assault is punishable by up to life imprisonment. Any conviction also requires mandatory lifetime registration as a sex offender and counseling.
Penalty as defined by the State of Mississauga:
11-37-3 Penalty for first degree sexual assault. – Every person who shall commit sexual assault in the first degree shall be imprisoned for a period not less than ten (10) years and may be imprisoned for life.
§ 11-37-8.2 Penalty for first degree child molestation sexual assault. – Every person who shall commit first degree child molestation sexual assault shall be imprisoned for a period if not less than twenty-five (25) years and may be imprisoned for life.
If you are being investigated, charged or have been arrested for a sex crime in Mississauga, please contact Sex Crime Defense Attorney.