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New Canaan Rape Lawyer

No matter what criminal offense you are accused of, you have the right to a fair trial and to quality legal representation from a top criminal defense attorney. If your case involves allegations of sexual assault, consider retaining a New Canaan rape lawyer to help you structure your defense and pursue a positive outcome.

How Does Connecticut Treat Rape Charges?

Instead of using the term “rape,” Connecticut state law defines various degrees of sexual assault which cover the same legal territory. With the exception of fourth-degree sexual assault, which is a class A misdemeanor, all sexual assault charges in Connecticut are felony offenses, each of which punishable by a minimum of one year in jail.

What Circumstances Warrant a First-Degree Sexual Assault Charge?

As per Connecticut General Statutes §53a-70, anyone who violently forces another person to engage in sexual intercourse, or who engages in sexual intercourse with a mentally incapacitated person, may be charged with first-degree sexual assault, a class B felony. According to C.G.S. §53a-70b, the same actions taken against a spouse, domestic partner, or cohabitant of the same domicile also constitute class B felony offenses.

What Constitutes Sexual Assault in the Second or Third Degree?

Sexual assault in the second degree, which typically entails sexual intercourse predicated on an abuse of power or trust, is usually a class C felony, while third-degree sexual assault is a class D felony that involves forced sexual contact or some form of incest. A qualified New Canaan rape attorney could work with a defendant to contest any such charge levied against them.

How Can Sexual Assault Charges Be Aggravated?

Every degree of sexual assault in Connecticut is punished more harshly if it involves a person who is not of legal age, or if it involves two people under legal age with a gap in age of at least two years between them. Typically, this manifests as an increase of one level in the severity of the charge—first-degree sexual assault would become a class A felony, second-degree sexual a class B felony, and so on. Likewise, fourth-degree sexual assault becomes a class D felony offense if it involves a minor.

What Happens if a Firearm Was Involved?

The use of a firearm or other deadly weapon during the commission of first-degree sexual assault—as well as any intent by the perpetrator to maim or seriously harm their alleged victim—elevates the associated offense to aggravated first-degree sexual assault. Aggravated first-degree sexual assault is punishable by the same penalties as first-degree sexual assault, except that the amount of prison time a court can elect to suspend is greatly reduced.

Representation from a qualified rape lawyer may be especially important for New Canaan residents facing these kinds of charges, as the criminal sanctions that may result from such a conviction are among the most severe available under Connecticut state.

Consider Retaining a Skilled New Canaan Rape Attorney

If you are facing any degree of sexual assault charge, you owe it to yourself to ensure you seek the best legal representation possible. A skilled New Canaan rape lawyer can play an essential role in structuring your criminal defense and negotiating in your best interests. Call Mark Sherman Law today to learn more or to schedule an initial consultation.