Allegations of sexual assault can be difficult to contest due to the severity with which prosecutors and the general public often look down on offenders of this nature. On top of the various social and professional repercussions that a mere accusation can have, a conviction for this type of offense may result in felony-level sanctions that could include years of imprisonment.

Representation from an experienced Frisco sexual assault lawyer could be essential to protecting your best interests both in and out of court during this type of case. From beginning to end of your legal proceedings, a dedicated sex crimes attorney at Barbieri Law Firm, P.C. can work diligently to enforce your rights under the law, construct the strongest possible defense on your behalf, and obtain the most positive case resolution possible given the circumstances.

Defining Sexual Assault

Texas Penal Code §22.011 establishes two broad forms under which a criminal act of sexual assault may take. First, under TX Pen. Code §22.011(a)(1), it is unlawful for someone to “intentionally or knowingly” engage in any form of oral or penetrative sexual intercourse—whether the actor is the party engaging in penetration or being penetrated—with someone else without the second person’s consent.

Subsection (b) goes on to define 14 specific situations in which sexual intercourse can occur without consent, ranging far beyond the use or threat of physical violence to include situations like:

  • The second party is physically unable to resist and/or unconscious
  • The second party is incapable of understanding or resisting sexual intercourse due to mental disease or incapacity
  • The perpetrator knowingly and intentionally impaired the second party’s judgement and/or physical capabilities by administering an intoxicating substance to them without their knowledge or consent
  • The perpetrator is a public servant, healthcare provider, clergyman, coach, or caregiver who knowingly abused their authority over the second party to coerce sexual intercourse

The second way in which sexual assault may occur is a little more straightforward: as per TX Pen. Code §22.011(a)(2), any person who engages in oral or penetrative intercourse with a person under 17 or who causes a child of such age to engage in such conduct with any other person has committed a criminal offense. However, there are a few affirmative defenses to prosecution under this particular subsection that a Frisco sexual assault attorney could discuss in more detail during a private consultation.

Possible Penalties Upon Conviction

With very few exceptions, sexual assault is almost always a second-degree felony in the state of Texas. This means that a person convicted for any variant of this offense as defined above will face the consequences below:

  • Between two and 20 years in prison
  • A$10,000 maximum fine
  • Mandatory registration for life as a sex offender in the state of Texas

However, if an alleged act of sexual assault results in an individual’s injury, or if the second party involved is a child under 14 years old, the crime would be considered an aggravated sexual assault under TX Pen. Code §22.021, and prosecuted as a first-degree felony offense. Assistance from a skilled defense lawyer is vital to pursuing a fair case result following sexual assault allegations of this nature in Frisco.

Contact a Frisco Sexual Assault Attorney to Learn More

Building a strong defense in response to a sexual assault allegation is a multifaceted process that often requires both extensive evidence and legal expertise. A knowledgeable defense attorney with a track record of positive results from similar cases could provide crucial help in both regards, as well as irreplaceable guidance when it comes to managing personal and professional fallout outside of court.

Get in touch with a Frisco sexual assault lawyer at Barbieri Law Firm, P.C. as soon as possible after being accused of this type of offense. Call now to schedule your confidential consultation.

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