Facing allegations of rape is a frightening experience. Because your reputation and freedom are at stake, you must seek assistance from a skilled Orange County rape lawyer if you are facing these charges. The penalties for forcing another into sexual intercourse are severe. You need a proactive and diligent criminal defense attorney who could immediately investigate the alleged offense to obtain and present evidence that supports your innocence. Our team of sex crimes attorneys at The Law Office of Scott D. Henry has decades of experience defending clients facing rape charges and has had unprecedented success.

What is Considered Rape in California?

California Penal Code 261 PC defines rape as using force, threats of force, or fraud as a means to have non-consensual sexual intercourse with another individual. PC 261 further defines this crime as non-consensual sex with another when:

  • The intercourse occurs by the use of force, coercion, or violence
  • The other person is intoxicated and unable to consent
  • The other person is unconscious of the act
  • The other person is incapable of consenting because they suffer from a mental disorder

These charges can also include date rape and statutory rape. Any form of forced sexual intercourse is taken seriously and punished harshly by local prosecutors and judges. Retaining an attorney in Orange County who has a vast knowledge of how rape cases are investigated and prosecuted and has a proven track record of effectively fighting these charges is essential.

Common Penalties for Rape Convictions in Orange Convictions

Rape offenses are charged as a felony. As such, a conviction carries a penalty of three, six, or eight years in prison, felony probation, and fines of up to $10,000. The prison sentence length largely depends on the circumstances of the alleged crime, and the defendant’s criminal record. The convicted individual also may endure a life-long mandatory requirement to register as a sex offender. If they are not a U.S. citizen, they are typically deported and anyone convicted of a felony will be stripped of their gun rights. In California, a rape conviction also counts as a strike under the Three Strikes Law.

Some circumstances may add to the penalties for a conviction. If the alleged victim sustained great bodily harm during the incident, a judge could sentence the defendant to five additional years in prison. Great bodily harm includes broken bones, extensive bruising, and vaginal injury.

An experienced attorney in Orange County could help fight for your rights and help you avoid severe penalties if you are facing rape charges. If a conviction cannot be avoided, your lawyer could negotiate a lesser charge to avoid a felony conviction and a strike on your record.

If the penalties for a conviction included time in prison, he or she is not eligible for an expungement. However, if they received time in county jail or felony probation, state law allows them to seek an expungement.

Speak with an Orange County Rape Attorney

Rape allegations are extremely serious and need to be addressed immediately. If you have been accused of forcing another individual into sex, you must obtain an Orange County rape lawyer to aggressively fight for your rights, reputation, and freedom. Our attorneys have decades of experience helping clients avoid convictions. We are highly regarded among local law enforcement, prosecutors, and judges for our ethical and proactive approach to defending our clients. We are here to help guide you through the process and assist you every step of the way. Please contact us today for a free consultation.

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