Sexual Assault Lawyer in Lexington, SC
What constitutes sexual assault in South Carolina?
Have you been accused of committing a sexual assault in Lexington, Columbia
or another area in South Carolina? If so, it is important that you understand
what type of charges you may be up against – as the term, "sexual
assault," can be used to describe a number of different criminal
offenses. For example, the legal definition describes this crime as any
instance in which one person forcefully suggests, or engages in, unwanted
sexual activities with another person.
This could range from grabbing, groping or feeling another person in a
sexual manner – i.e. touching their breasts or genitals without
consent – to forced penetration. For this reason, it is critical
that you understand what type of
sex crime you are being charged with, as the subsequent penalties could range from
minor to severe. Some of the most common forms of sexual assault include:
South Carolina's Law Regarding Consent
One of the most important aspects of your case will be whether or not the
other party had consented to the alleged sexual activities. This is an
area that is not exactly black and white, as it is usually a case of "he
said, she said." For example,
it is not uncommon for two consenting adults to engage in sexual acts,
only to have one claim that they had been assaulted later on – either out of shame, regret or revenge. It can be difficult in
this instance to prove that they had willing consented, as there usually
aren't any witnesses that can testify to this fact.
This does not necessarily mean that their account will be trusted as the
truth. The burden will be on their shoulders to prove that you are guilty,
rather than on you to prove that you are innocent. In any case, however,
it is important to understand the state's laws regarding consent.
In South Carolina, one cannot legally consent to any sort of sexual activity
until they have reached the age of 16. This means that you could be found
guilty of a statutory rape offense if you have engaged in sexual acts
with a minor – regardless of whether or not they had done so willingly.
Additionally, marriage does not give you legitimate grounds to prove consent.
If, for example, a husband forcible engages in sexual acts with his wife,
he can still be found guilty of marital rape. Finally, South Carolina
laws state that a person who is intoxicated by either alcohol or drugs
cannot legally give consent. For this reason, it is important for you
to discuss your case with one of the Lexington
criminal defense lawyers at our firm if you have been accused of being involved in any of these
Contact a Lexington Criminal Defense Attorney Today
If you have been accused of carrying out a sexual assault in South Carolina,
it is imperative that you act quickly. Accusations of this nature carry
the potential for lasting ramifications – as a conviction may not
only result in legal penalties, but it may have a damaging effect on your
personal life. For this reason, the legal team at the
Law Office of James R. Snell, Jr., LLC encourages you to get in touch with a Lexington criminal lawyer at the
firm immediately. We will be able to investigate the circumstances of
your arrest and develop a viable defense strategy on your behalf as soon
as we have been contacted. To learn more, simply pick up the phone and
give us a call at (888) 301-6004 for a
free initial consultation.