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Huntsville, Alabama 35801

Rape Charges

Sex crimes are always serious. Whenever someone is accused of a sex crime, it’s not only that person’s liberty on the line with possible time in prison, it’s their dignity, which scores of draconian severe measures like registration and notification requirements. While the state claims that these measures are designed for ” public safety” the end result is that they humiliate anyone who is subject to the laws. Charges of sexual assault can be especially serious because of both the very severe punishments and the strong stigma associated.

In fact, the source of rape allegations can easily be false allegations and exaggerated claims. Regardless, prosecutors may push forward with their case, because they have only heard one side of the story and, may hope to find a sympathetic jury. If you’re facing accusations of rape in Huntsville, you need the strongest possible defense. An experienced criminal defense attorney can fight for you in court against these charges.

Huntsville Rape Defense Attorney

Law Offices Of Segal & Segal is experienced with sexual assault cases in Alabama. If you’ve been charged with sexual assault, we can represent you. We believe in respect, and we’ll fight for the dignity of our clients in what could be the most humiliating time of their lives. We are dedicated to the principles of justice and believe in “innocent until proven guilty.” Call us at (256) 533-4529 or send an online message today or send us an online message, so we can set up a free consultation to go over your charges.

Sandra and Andrew Segal know the criminal courtrooms, having practiced both as prosecutors and defense attorneys. Sandra Segal is a former prosecutor for the City Attorney’s Office in Huntsville. Andrew Segal prosecuted cases for the Madison County District Attorney and Alabama Attorney General. Moreover, our lawyers at Law Offices Of Segal & Segal practice with honor and integrity, which means that juries, judges and even prosecutors respect them— something immensely important in your advocate, as you are charged with a crime that carries a stigma.

If you’ve been charged with rape anywhere in the Huntsville-Decatur area, including Madison, Morgan, Marshall, Limestone or Jackson County, let us help you fight the charges.


Laws Regarding Sexual Assault in Alabama


Defining Rape in Alabama

The key defining element in charges of sexual assault, under Alabama law, is sexual intercourse. Sexual intercourse has the “ordinary meaning,” of the male sexual organ penetrating the female sexual organ. There is no emission or ejaculation required for the prosecution to define any penetration as sexual intercourse. And any penetration, however slight, is sufficient to result in a sexual assault charge.

The law has two “degrees” of sexual assault. Rape in the first degree, in Alabama Code Section 13A-6-61, is when the accused engages in sexual intercourse with a member of the opposite sex and either the intercourse is by forcible compulsion, either by actual physical force or by threat, express or implied, of immediate death or serious injury to the victim or another person. sexual assault in the first degree also includes when the alleged victim is not capable of consenting due to being physically helpless or mentally incapacitated, or, if the accused is older than 16, when the alleged victim is younger than 12.

Physically incapacitated means the victim is unconscious or physically unable to communicate lack of consent, such as when the victim is in a coma.  Mentally incapacitated includes when the victim is allegedly sufficiently intoxicated, drugged or given date rape drugs or alcohol without consent.

Rape in the second degree, under Alabama Code Section 13A-6-62, is when the accused is older than 16 engages in sexual intercourse with someone between the ages of 12 and 16, unless the accused is within two years of age of the victim. Second degree rape also includes sexual intercourse if the victim is mentally defective under Alabama law. Mentally defective means the victim suffers from mental illness or disability that means he or she is unable to give consent.


Penalties and Punishment for Rape Convictions

Sexual assault in the second degree is a Class B felony, punishable by two to 20 years in prison and up to a $30,000 fine. Rape in the first degree is a Class A felony, punishable with 10 to 99 years in prison, or for life, and up to a $60,000 fine.

However, if you have already been convicted of a felony, the punishment is increased. For second degree sexual assault, you could be sentenced with 10 to 99 years in prison, or for life, and up to a $60,000 fine, and for first degree rape, the minimum punishment goes up to 15 years in prison, up to 99 years or life. If you’ve been convicted of more one felony, the punishment keeps going up.

These punishments are only the beginning. Once released from prison, you will have to register with the Sex Offender Database. The database will list your name, age, address, a picture, (where you work? ) If you are able to get a job, what you were convicted of and the age and gender of the victim. It is available to the public. That means potential employers will be faced with whether they want their address listed on your sex offender page. It means people you interested in forming personal relationships with will be able to search for and find your name.

Your neighbors will definitely know, because police are required to notify them. You will not be able to live within 2,000 feet of schools or child care centers, and you will not be allowed to live with any minors unless you are their parent, stepparent, grandparent or sibling.


Huntsville Defenses to Sexual Assault Accusations

If you’ve been charged with rape in Madison County, the stakes are too high for anything less than the most powerful defense available. An experienced sexual assault defense attorney can help you create that defense and argue your case in court. In rape cases, there are sometimes false accusations and exaggerated claims by the alleged victim. These must be exposed. An attorney can look for the holes in the prosecution’s case.

The district attorney must prove his or her case “beyond a reasonable doubt,” meaning no other scenario, save a completely improbable one, could have occurred than the one he or she describes. That sounds like a difficult standard, and it is difficult. But don’t underestimate our district attorneys —Huntsville is the home of the national children’s advocacy and family law center as well as the family violence unit the District Attorney’s Office. Prosecutors can and will prove themselves capable of meeting that burden.  A Huntsville sex offense attorney with experience in rape charges will find and exploit the weaknesses in the case.


Aggressively Fighting for Clients who Have Been Charged with Rape

Rape is a very serious charge, with very serious consequences. A skilled rape defense lawyer in Huntsville may make the difference between freedom and prison or a clean record and becoming an entry in the Sex Offender Database. Our Huntsville rape attorneys at Law Offices Of Segal & Segal will fight for your rights, your liberty and your dignity. Call us today at (256) 533-4529 or send an online message for a free consultation.





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