In Texas, sexual assault charges are serious. People who are convicted may face up to 20 years in prison and ongoing sex offender registration. If people are convicted of aggravated sexual assault, the penalties are more severe. Because of the severity of the potential penalties, these types of charges should not be treated lightly by the defendants.
Under the Texas sexual assault statute, a person is guilty of sexual assault when he or she penetrates the victim’s sexual organs without the victim’s consent. It also occurs when the defendant penetrates the victim’s mouth without his or her consent. Sexual assault can also be charged when the victim os a child under the age of 17 and is sexually contacted by any of the previously described means.
Sexual acts are considered to have occurred without consent when physical force is used or threatened. In cases in which the victim is incapable of giving consent because of a disability, sexual assault may be charged. Consent is also considered to be lacking when the defendant has a position of authority over the victim.
Sex charges can result in years in prison, substantial fines, and other penalties if people are convicted as charged. People who are facing sexual assault charges may want to retain experienced criminal defense lawyers as soon as possible. An experienced attorney might review the evidence against his or her client to identify problems with the prosecutor’s case. He or she may then thoroughly investigate what happened and work to build a strong defense for his or her client. Working with an experienced lawyer may help someone who is facing serious sex crimes allegations to obtain a better resolution of his or her case.