Sexual assault is expressly defined under the Texas Penal Code Section 522.021. The Section also contains what propels an assault case to be an aggravated sexual assault. This offense is considered more serious compared to the normal assault. It brings with it a heightened punishment. Most lawyers that are consistently seen at the Harris County Criminal Justice center defending people with aggravated sexual assault cases, believe that most people that are accused of a crime involving sex are assumed to be guilty and are in dire need of an experienced criminal defense lawyer.
Aggravated Sexual Assault
And The Texas Penal Code
Under the Texas Penal Code, sexual assault happens when an individual recklessly, knowingly or intentionally causes harm to another individual and/or threatens to harm another individual via sexual attack without his or her consent. In contrast, this offense comprises of the mens rea of knowingly or intentionally. Consequently, there’s no conviction of you only acted recklessly. Moreover, aggravated sexual assault consists of oral, anal, or vaginal penetration.
Sexual offense with physical attack
Serious forced physical attacks coupled with sexual offenses have a tendency to have heightened penalties when convicted. Most factors might contribute to more serious crimes. Attempting to kill someone or brutally harming an individual physically is considered severe. The other serious offense one can commit under this law is planting fear in a victim in such a way that they fear for their life. The state of fear such as kidnapping might be constant or momentary. Committing these acts with multiple partners or with a partner might cause a higher penalty when convicted.
You might incur additional punishments if you use drugs for sexual escapades involving the disabled, old or young.
What about the consent of the victim?
According to the law in Texas, one gives up his or her consent when he or she is threatened. The fear of lasting damage, dying, or being hurt forces an individual to think about surviving only. When someone is required to take part in such actions, the law doesn’t consider it as consent or permission. The threat of potential harm usually looms over them. If the object of harm has connection with an attacker or not, any negative response to prospective sexual acts is normally considered inconsequential.
Defenses to Sex Crime Allegations
Here are some of the defenses against this offense:
- The defendant was the child’s spouse when the offense was committed
- The defendant wasn’t any more than 3 years older than a child when the offense was committed
- The said conduct comprised of medical care for a kid
Sentences and Penalties
Typically, a sexual assault is a 2nd degree felony. It carries a sentence of 2 – 20 years inside a state prison and/or $10000 in terms of fine. Nonetheless, a judge might elevate the crime to 1st degree felony if a victim was with an individual whom a defendant was forbidden from marrying or living under a marriage with the victim. A 1st degree felony in this state is punishable by 5 – 99 years inside a state prison and/or $10000 in terms of fine.