In Louisiana, there are three levels -- degrees -- of rape charges. The two key elements of rape in Louisiana are penetration and lack of consent. Penetration can be proven even if the penetration is minimal or even negligible. If there is no penetration, then generally, the crime is called some form of sexual battery. Because Louisiana prosecuting attorneys generally charge as many crimes as the facts will substantiate, in rape cases, the accused will very often be charged with various levels of rape, sexual battery, and common battery.
Consent is generally a defense, but there are many circumstances in which the victim cannot legally consent. Examples in which consent cannot occur include those cases in which the accuser is under the age of 17 and those accusers who are mentally infirm. In Louisiana, rape can involve oral, vaginal, or anal penetration.
Those convicted will face incarceration, fines, and mandatory sex offender registration.
First-degree rape -- also called aggravated rape -- is the most serious. It involves oral, anal, or vaginal penetration without the victim's consent and one of the following:
First-degree rape carries a potential life sentence.
Second-degree rape -- also called forcible rape -- involves oral, anal, or vaginal penetration without the victim's consent and one of the following:
A conviction of second-degree rape carries a potential incarceration term of 5 to 40 years at hard labor.
Third-degree rape -- also called simple rape -- involves oral, anal, or vaginal penetration without the victim's consent and one of the following:
A conviction of third-degree rape carries a potential incarceration term of up to 25 years at hard labor.
Defenses to charges of rape in Louisiana
If you are charged with rape in Louisiana, you may benefit from hiring a Louisiana criminal defense attorney. A defense attorney can evaluate your case and protect your legal rights. Contact us here at the Law Offices of Philip B. Adams. Depending on the facts, there may be potential legal defenses. Examples include:
Contact A Louisiana Criminal Defense Attorney Today
For more information, contact the Law Offices of Philip B. Adams today. We are top-rated, relentless, and aggressive Louisiana criminal defense lawyers. Complete our "Contact Us" page here. We have the experience and legal knowledge that you need to defend your criminal case. We have offices in Shreveport and handle criminal defense cases throughout all of Louisiana.