Sexual Assault

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Sexual Assault Lawyer Serving Fredericksburg, Virginia

If you’re facing sexual assault charges, you may be worried about how to fight the charges and how a conviction might affect your reputation and future. An experienced attorney can provide the needed legal help for sex crime accusations in Fredericksburg and pursue a favorable resolution to your criminal case. Contact Buczek Carpenter right away for an initial case evaluation with a Fredericksburg sex crimes lawyer to discuss your legal rights and options.

Why Choose a Fredericksburg Sexual Assault Attorney from Buczek Carpenter?

When facing the prospect of incarceration, fines, and long-term consequences from a sexual assault conviction, nothing matters more than achieving an outcome in your case that protects your rights, reputation, and future. Fredericksburg residents charged with sexual assault or other sex crimes have turned to the legal team of Buczek Carpenter for help facing criminal prosecution because of our one-on-one client service, extensive experience and skills, proven record of success, and dedication to guiding clients through their cases from start to finish.

Sexual Assault Charges Under Virginia Law

At Buczek Carpenter, a Virginia sexual abuse attorney can defend you against charges of sexual assault. Virginia law includes multiple categories of criminal sexual assault. Some of the sexual offense charges listed under this section of the Virginia Code include:

  • Rape– Engaging in sexual intercourse with another person against their will, whether by force, threat, or intimidation, through the use of the person’s mental or physical incapacity, or when the victim is under 13
  • Forcible Sodomy– Engaging in cunnilingus, fellatio, anilingus, or anal intercourse with a person under 13 or against a person’s will through the use of force, threat, or intimidation or the person’s physical or mental incapacity
  • Object Sexual Penetration– Penetrating a person’s vagina or anus, causing the person to penetrate their anus or vagina, or causing an animal to penetrate or be penetrated by a victim when the victim is under 13, the act occurs against the victim’s will, or by use of force, threat, or intimidation or the victim’s physical or mental incapacity
  • Sexual Battery– Sexual abuse of a victim by force, threat, intimidation, or ruse, or against an inmate, probationer, or parolee when the perpetrator works for a correctional agency
  • Aggravated Sexual Battery– Sexual abuse of a victim under 13, through the use of the victim’s mental or physical incapacity, by a parent or grandparent against a victim between 13 and 18, or against the victim’s will when the victim is between 13 and 15, the abuse causes severe physical or mental injury, or the perpetrator uses or threatens to use a dangerous weapon
  • Infected Sexual Battery– Engaging in sexual activity that poses a substantial risk of transmitting an STI with intent to transmit that infection to another person when the other person becomes infected
  • Sexual Abuse of a Child Under 15– Committing an act of sexual abuse, with lascivious intent, against a child aged 13 or 14
  • Carnal Knowledge of Certain Minors– Engaging in sexual acts, without the use of force, with a minor 15 or older confined, detained, or committed to the custody of the Department of Juvenile Justice when the perpetrator provides services to juveniles under the Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court Law

Penalties and Consequences for a Sexual Assault Conviction

Virginia law considers sexual assault a severe crime and imposes harsh penalties for convictions for many sexual assault offenses. For example, a conviction for rape, forcible sodomy, or object sexual penetration carries a penalty of five years to life in person, with a mandatory minimum term of 25 years for a perpetrator more than three years older than the victim when the offense occurs in the course of another criminal offense, such as kidnapping. Convictions also carry a mandatory life sentence for adult perpetrators who commit rape or forcible sodomy against a victim under 13.

Aggravated sexual battery carries a penalty of one to 20 years in prison and a potential fine of up to $100,000.

Virginia law grades other sexual assault offenses as Class 4 or 6 felonies or Class 1 or 4 misdemeanors. Penalties for conviction include:

  • Class 4 Felony– Two to 10 years imprisonment and a fine of up to $100,000
  • Class 6 Felony– One to five years imprisonment, or up to 12 months in jail when not tried by a jury, and a fine of up to $2,500
  • Class 1 Misdemeanor– Up to 12 months in jail and a fine of up to $2,500
  • Class 4 Misdemeanor– A fine of up to $250

A conviction for sexual assault crimes in Virginia can also have long-term consequences in addition to incarceration and fines, including requirements to register as a sex offender and a criminal record that will show up on background checks and could limit your housing, employment, and educational opportunities.

Potential Sex Crimes Defense Strategies

Depending on the facts of your case, you may have various factual and legal defenses to raise against sexual assault charges. Some of the most common defense strategies used in sex crimes cases include:

  • Consent– Many sexual assault cases turn on whether the alleged victim consented to the underlying sexual activity.
  • Identity– A defense to sexual assault charges may involve challenging the victim’s or eyewitnesses’ identification of the alleged perpetrator.
  • Alibi– An alibi defense involves proving that you were somewhere else when the alleged sexual assault occurred.
  • Fabrication– Some defenses to sex crimes argue that the alleged victim fabricated their allegations, including in retaliation for a personal conflict between the alleged victim and the defendant.
  • Challenging the Reliability of Forensic Evidence– Many sexual assault cases involve forensic evidence, such as DNA or hair evidence. A defense may involve challenging the reliability of forensic testing that identifies you as the source of the evidence.
  • Challenging Evidence or Statements Obtained in Violation of Your Rights– Investigators may obtain evidence or statements from you in violation of your constitutional and civil rights. For example, they may search your home or person without a warrant or probable cause to support an exception to the warrant requirement. They may also question you without advising you of your Miranda rights or continue to question you in violation of those rights.

How Can a Fredericksburg Sex Crimes Lawyer Help You Fight Your Charges?

Securing legal representation for sex crimes in Fredericksburg means you have a dedicated advocate who will fight for your rights and interests by:

  • Independently investigating your charges to obtain all available evidence that may help support your defense
  • Evaluating your legal options for fighting your charges
  • Sitting down with you to explain your charges, the potential outcomes in your case, and what to expect during the criminal justice process
  • Working with expert witnesses as necessary to challenge forensic evidence
  • Contesting the prosecution’s case at each step, including moving to exclude unreliable or unlawfully obtained evidence or testimony
  • Negotiating a favorable plea agreement when appropriate or presenting a compelling defense at trial when you choose to maintain your innocence

Contact Buczek Carpenter Today to Talk to a Fredericksburg, Virginia, Sexual Assault Lawyer

After the Fredericksburg Police Department has arrested you for sexual assault crimes, you need experienced criminal defense for sexual assault offenses to protect your rights, reputation, and future. Contact Buczek Carpenter today for a free, confidential consultation with a knowledgeable rape defense lawyer to discuss your legal options for pursuing a favorable resolution to your criminal case.

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