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Sex Crimes and Lack of Consent

When most people think of sex crimes, such as forcible rape or statutory rape, they think of a devious stranger taking advantage of a helpless woman or child. When in reality, sex crimes are more complex. There are several ways an individual may engage in sexual conduct and be unaware the conduct is unlawful and considered a sex crime.

It is not uncommon for an individual to commit the following offenses and be unaware the activity was criminal:

  • Statutory Rape
  • Rape of a “Mentally Defective” Person
  • Rape of a “Physically Helpless” Person

Huntsville Sex Crime Defense Lawyer

The team of attorneys at Law Offices Of Segal & Segal have extensive experience defending individuals faced with sex crime charges, including rape, sexual battery, child pornography, and statutory rape. As former prosecutors, the attorneys at Law Offices Of Segal & Segal will skillfully build the strongest defense possible in your case.

Law Offices Of Segal & Segal proudly represents individuals throughout Huntsville-Decatur area, including anywhere in Madison, Morgan, Marshall, Limestone, and Jackson Counties. Contact the Law Offices Of Segal & Segal at (256) 533-4529 or submit an online form to schedule a confidential consultation to discuss your case.


Alabama Sex Crime Information Center


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Statutory Rape

In Alabama is it against the law for a person age 18 or older to engage in sexual conduct with a person age 16 or younger, even if both parties “consent” to the sexual conduct. The reason this conduct is considered rape is because a minor cannot legally consent to sexual activities. Statutory rape is a common occurrence amongst individuals in the same peer group.

It is common for an 18 year old senior to engage in sexual conduct with the 15 year old sophomore boyfriend or girlfriend. The parties are in a relationship. The sexual conduct may be a reflection of love and affection where both parties agreed to have sex and there is no force or violence involved. However, this conduct is still illegal because Alabama law says that a minor cannot legally consent to sex. Under these facts, the 18 year old can be charged with statutory rape.

There are several charges related to statutory rape, including:

  • Second Degree Rape
  • Second Degree Sexual Abuse
  • First Degree Sexual Abuse
  • First Degree Rape

Depending on the facts of the case, particularly the age of the defendant and victim, the defendant can face up to twenty years in prison and required sex offender registration.

There are several defenses and exceptions to charges of statutory rape. If faced with these charges, it is imperative to contact an experienced statutory rape defense attorney immediately.


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Mentally Defective Person

The core of rape charges is the perpetrator engages in sexual activity with a person who is unable to consent or does not give consent. As earlier discussed, certain persons, like minors, who cannot legally consent. Another class of persons that cannot consent to sexual conduct includes “mentally defective” persons or persons with mental disease.

An individual is considered mentally defective when he or she is incapable of appraising the nature of their conduct due to a mental disease or defect. Essentially, the victim cannot understand the nature of the conduct and as a result cannot consent to the sexual conduct.

Should an individual engage in sexual conduct with a mentally defective person, he or she could be charged with second degree rape. Second degree rape is a Class B felony, punishable by imprisonment of no less than 2 years and no more than 20 years.

Should the victim be mentally incapacitated, meaning the person is lacking sufficient mental capacity, the individual accused could face first degree rape charges. First degree rape is punishable by imprisonment of no less than 10 years and no more than 99 years.


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Physically Helpless Persons

Another class of persons that cannot consent to sexual conduct includes persons who are physically helpless. A person is considered “physically helpless” when for any reason the individual is rendered incapable of consenting. Commonly, this occurs when a victim is intoxicated or passes out.

Engaging in sexual conduct with someone who is incapable of appraising the nature of the conduct can result in rape charges. Generally, an individual engages in sexual intercourse with a member of the opposite sex who is incapable of consent by reason of being physically helpless will face first degree rape charges. First degree rape is a Class A felony, punishable by imprisonment of no less than 10 years and no more than 99 years.


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Madison County Sex Crime Defense Lawyer

Sex crime charges are a serious matter. It is imperative to consult experienced legal counsel to fight these charges. Trust experienced sex crime defense attorneys and former prosecutors at Law Offices Of Segal & Segal to build a strong defense on your behalf.

The attorneys at Law Offices Of Segal & Segal understand the seriousness of these charges. From the initial consultation, the team of attorneys at Law Offices Of Segal & Segal will listen to every detail of your case and develop a legal strategy to achieve the best results possible based on your unique circumstances.

Law Offices Of Segal & Segal dilligently represents individuals faced with sex charges, including sexual abuse, rape, sodomy, child sex abuse, and indecent exposure. Law Offices Of Segal & Segal represent clients throughout Alabama, including Huntsville, Decatur, Madison, Athens, Albertville, and the surrounding areas.

Contact Law Offices Of Segal & Segal at (256) 533-4529 or submit an online form to schedule a free review of your case.


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