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Norwalk Statutory Rape Trials

Statutory rape trials in Norwalk can be intimidating, but an attorney can help fight for a positive disposition. Before appearing in Superior Court, reach out to a top statutory rape lawyer.

Are Statutory Rape Cases Heard in Front of a Jury?

The defendant can elect to have a trial by judge, known in CT as a bench trial, or a trial by jury. In statutory rape cases, jury trials are more common.

Since the law is so strict, defense attorneys often advise clients to pick jury trials. Juries might not understand the law, or they might be more lenient with the defendant. The chances of being found not guilty are often greater in front of a jury than a judge.

In Connecticut, jury selection is very different than most other states. Connecticut has individual voir dire, which means that each juror is individually questioned by both attorneys. Both the prosecutor and defense attorney can choose to either strike or accept the juror.

How Does an Attorney Help the Defendant Prepare for Trial?

Typically, an attorney will begin by reviewing all of the helpful evidence with the defendant. They then advise the defendant about the possible outcomes when the case goes before a jury. Next, the defense attorney prepares the defendant for cross-examination and direct examination if they are planning to take the stand.

Thorough preparation is critical because it is important for the defendant to understand the strengths and weaknesses of all the evidence against them. Before proceeding to trial, it is important for the defendant to have all the information so they can make an informed decision.

Is Testifying in Court Difficult for Defendants?

Many defendants find it difficult to testify in court, even if they are innocent. It is a very stressful and emotional situation, and most people have never been cross-examined or directly examined by attorneys. This is why preparation is important. Without being prepared, defendants may not know how they will respond in the moment.

What Evidence is Admissible in a Statutory Rape Case?

For evidence to be admissible in a statutory rape case, it must pass a relevancy test and a relevancy threshold. After that, there are many different rules that impact the admissibility of the evidence, such as hearsay, rape shield laws, and other rules pertaining to character evidence.

In statutory rape cases, any sexual conduct of the alleged victim is inadmissible unless it falls under one of the four codified exceptions. All hearsay is inadmissible unless it falls under one of the exceptions for hearsay, and any character evidence is also inadmissible.

Does a Defendant Have the Right to Appeal?

Yes, a person has the right to appeal if convicted of statutory rape at trial. First, the appeal goes to the state Appellate Court. If this court does not grant the appeal, the defendant can appeal to the state Supreme Court. If the state supreme court does not grant the appeal, then it becomes a federal issue, and the person can begin trying to appeal through the federal courts.

Let a Norwalk Statutory Rape Attorney Help with Your Trial

Statutory rape charges in Norwalk are felonies, and a conviction at trial can impact the rest of the person’s life. Without a strong defense, individuals risk jail time, heavy fines, strict probation, and a permanent felony conviction on their record. For help with your case, call Mark Sherman Law today.