Statutory Rape Charges in Virginia
Assistance from a Richmond Sex Crime Lawyer
The act of statutory rape occurs when an adult has consensual sexual intercourse with a minor who falls within a certain age range. Even a minor can be charged with statutory rape if he or she has sexual intercourse with someone who is younger than him or her (within a certain age group). Statutory rape differs from the regular offense of rape in that it involves the alleged victim (the minor) actually provides consent. This means that no force is used. Under statutory rape laws, even sexual activity between two people who are just a year or a couple of years apart in age can result in the older person being charged with a crime.
Convictions for charges related to statutory rape can lead to serious consequences, such as months in jail or years in prison. Furthermore, statutory rape charges can potentially lead to the defendant being designated a sex offender. Vaughan C. Jones, Attorney at Law has a Richmond criminal defense attorney who can provide you with aggressive representation in your case so that you can lower your chances of a conviction. Our criminal defense firm handles various types of sex crime cases.
Understanding Virginia's Statutory Rape Laws
In the state of Virginia, statutory rape is defined in a couple of different ways. The Code of Virginia §18-2-63 prohibits "carnal knowledge of a child" who between the ages of 13 and 15. The severity of this offense depends on the age of the offender. If the offender is an adult, the crime is considered a Class 4 felony. If the offender is also minor who is at least three years older than the younger minor who is between ages 13 and 15, the offense is a Class 6 felony, which is less severe than a Class 4 felony. If the minor offender is less than three years older than the minor who is between the ages of 13 and 15, the offense is a Class 4 misdemeanor. In Virginia, a child under the age of 13 is legally considered unable to provide consent to sexual relations with another person.
There is also another law in the state of Virginia (Code of Virginia §18.2-371) that prohibits an adult from having consensual sexual intercourse with a minor who is between the ages of 15 and 17. When the minor is not the adult's child, grandchild or spouse, this offense is considered a Class 1 misdemeanor.
Need a lawyer for a statutory rape case in Richmond?
The very first thing you should do after you are accused of statutory rape is to contact a skilled lawyer. Attorney Vaughan C. Jones is a former prosecutor, so he has unique insight into how to provide competitive defense in criminal cases. Contact our firm so we can help you take a stand for your freedom!