Charges concerning sexual assault and rape are very serious under Indiana law. When facing these forms of criminal accusations, individuals should know that they have rights and options. They may even have options to prepare and argue defenses to their charges and knowing what elements their charges involve can help them and their lawyers build clear and convincing cases. This informational post focuses on the criminal charge of rape. It does not provide any advice to readers but offers a place for them to start to learn more about this charge, its elements and possible consequences.
Elements of the charge
Rape is not unintentional. Under Indiana law, the individual accused of rape must know they are committing the offense or must intend to commit the offense. This is known as mens rea, or criminal intent or a guilty mind.
Rape also involves a physical component. It requires proof that a person alleged to have committed rape compelled or forced another to have sexual intercourse or had sexual intercourse with someone who could not consent or have an understanding of what was happening. It may also involve compelling, forcing or threatening another individual into performing other forms of sexual conduct.
Convictions result in felony punishments
In Indiana, rape is a felony charge. Depending on the facts of the alleged case, it can be a Level 1 or Level 3 felony charge. As individuals may know, rape charges that result in convictions can lead to lengthy prison sentences, costs, losses of reputation, inclusion on sex registries, and other heavy burdens.
There are opportunities, however, for individuals facing rape charges to stand up for themselves and to seek the support of knowledgeable legal professionals who work in the criminal defense field. The dedicated attorneys and staff of Kammen & Moudy are prepared to discuss defense options with new clients facing rape and other serious charges.