Posted on May 14, 2019 in Sex Crimes
Sexual assault is a serious crime under Arizona law. If someone receives a charge for sexual assault, he or she will not only face jail sentences and fines, the accused could also suffer damage to their reputation and personal affairs for the rest of his or her life. Under Arizona state law, the courts define sexual assault crimes based on their severity. Each degree of sexual assault involves different punishments and types of crimes.
In the state of Arizona, you commit an act of sexual assault if you intentionally or knowingly engage in sexual intercourse or oral sex without the other person’s consent. Arizona defines a lack of consent to include coercion, impairment by alcohol, drugs, sleep, or a mental disorder, intentional deception about the act, and intentional deception about whether or not the offender was the victim’s spouse.
Penalties for sexual assault in Arizona range based on your criminal history, the age of the victim, or any physical harm that the victim suffered. Prison terms for sexual assault range from 5.25 years to 28 years for a first-time offense. Sexual assaults that involve physical harm to a victim or a victim under the age of 12, you could receive a life sentence for a first-time offense.
You commit an act of sexual abuse in Arizona if you intentionally engage in sexual contact with any person who is older than 15 years of age without his or her consent, with a person under 15 years old if the contact only involves the female breast, or with a person who is 15, 16, or 17 years old if you were in a position of trust. Positions of trust include parents, stepparents, legal guardians, teachers, coaches, priests, or foster parents.
Arizona classifies sexual abuse as either a Class 5 felony or a Class 3 felony. Class 5 felony charges involve a prison sentence between 6 months of 2.5 years for a first-time offense, depending on how serious or aggravated the crime was. If the crime involved a child under the age of 15, you would receive a Class 3 felony charge. This charge carries a sentence between 13 years to 27 years for first-time offenders.
Consult with a sexual assault attorney to build a defense case if you have been accused of sexual assault.
Child molestation is a serious crime in Arizona. You commit an act of child molestation if you intentionally or knowingly engage in sexual contact with a child under the age of 15. All forms of sexual contact are applicable to child molestation cases, except sexual contact with the female breast. Child molestation is a Class 2 felony and a Dangerous Crime Against Children. You could receive a prison sentence between 10 to 24 years based on the circumstances of the crime if you were a first-time offender.
Statutory rape involves sexual conduct with a minor under the age of 18. This crime involves sexual intercourse and oral sexual conduct. If the victim was under the age of 15, you could receive a Class 2 felony and a Dangerous Crime Against Children charge. You could face a sentence between 13 years to 27 years in prison for a first-time statutory rape charge.
For statutory rape cases involving a child who is at least 15, you could receive a first-time Class 6 felony charge punishable by 6 months to 2 years in prison. For cases involving a victim who was at least 15 and you were in a position of trust, you could receive a Class 2 felony charge and a prison sentence between 4 years to 12.5 years for a first-time charge.
Sexual assault and sex crimes in Arizona are very serious. If you are facing sexual assault charges in Arizona, you could face severe consequences that will follow you for years. You could suffer damage to your freedom, your finances, and your quality of life. Contact a Phoenix criminal defense attorney as soon as possible to learn more about your legal options.