Columbus Statutory Rape Defense Lawyer

Columbus Statutory Rape Defense LawyerHave you recently been arrested or accused of statuory rape in Columbus, OH?

If so, it is in your best interest to begin fighting back against their allegations as quickly and vigorously as possible. You can start by reaching out to a knowledgeable Columbus statutory rape lawyer at Koenig & Owen, LLC.

Why You Should Hire Koenig & Owen, LLC When Facing Statutory Rape Charges in Columbus

At Koenig & Owen, LLC, we have a long and proud history of fighting for the people of Columbus when they need it most.

When you ask us to defend you against your statutory rape charges, our Columbus criminal defense attorneys will:

  • Help you understand the Ohio legal system
  • Launch an independent investigation into the state’s claims
  • Walk you through your potential legal options
  • Provide you with sound legal advice and guidance at all times
  • Stand up for your constitutional rights
  • Research and devise a customized defense strategy for you
  • Search for evidence to help your case
  • Negotiate a plea bargain deal with the prosecutor
  • Represent you in criminal court, if necessary

Would you like to have our knowledgeable sex crimes defense lawyers help you fight back against the accusations of the state of Ohio? If so, please do not hesitate to give us a call and arrange a free initial consultation at our law office in Columbus. Our legal team has been working on cases like yours for years and is ready to battle for you.

Defining Statutory Rape Under Ohio Law

Most jurisdictions in the United States, and across the world, define statutory rape as the act of engaging in sexual intercourse with an individual who is below the age of consent. In Ohio, the age of consent is 16.Having sex with a minor could land in front of a judge for any of the following offenses in the state of Ohio.

Rape

Section 2907.02 of the Ohio Revised Code explains that it is unlawful for a person to engage in sexual conduct with another individual that is younger than 13 years of age – whether the offender knows about that fact or not.

Ohio law defines “sexual conduct” as:

  • Vaginal intercourse
  • Anal intercourse
  • Fellatio
  • Cunnilingus, or
  • Penetration with a foreign object

When police officers catch someone violating this statute, they can arrest them and charge them with rape.

The Buckeye State almost always classifies rape as a felony of the first degree.

Sexual Assault/Battery

Section 2907.03 of the Ohio Revised Code explains that it is unlawful for a person to engage in sexual conduct with another individual if:

  • The offender is the victim’s parent, guardian, or custodian
  • The offender is a teacher, and the victim is a minor that attends their school
  • The offender is a coach, and the victim is a minor over whom they have authority
  • The offender is a peace officer, and the victim is a minor that is more than two years their junior

Individuals who violate this statute are guilty of sexual battery.

The state of Ohio typically punishes this sex offense as a felony of the second or third degree.

Unlawful Sexual Conduct with a Minor

Section 2907.04 of the Ohio Revised Code is Ohio’s main statutory rape law. It explains that it is unlawful for a person who is at least 18 years old to engage in sexual conduct with an individual who is between the ages of 13 and 16.

Columbus residents who violate this law are guilty of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor – a crime that the courts may classify as a:

  • Felony of the second degree
  • Felony of the third degree
  • Felony of the fourth degree, or
  • Misdemeanor of the first degree

When determining the severity of this offense, judges mainly look at the age-gap between the victim and the offender.

Importuning

Section 2907.07 of the Ohio Revised Code explains that it is unlawful for a person who is at least 18 and is more than four years older than their victim to solicit an individual who is between the ages of 13 and 17 to engage in sexual conduct.

When Columbus law enforcement officers catch someone violating this statute, they can charge them with importuning.

Depending on the circumstances surrounding the crime, prosecutors in Ohio may classify importuning as a:

  • Felony of the second degree
  • Felony of the third degree
  • Felony of the fourth degree, or
  • Felony of the fifth degree

Is the state of Ohio accusing you of committing one of these sexual offenses? Then please reach out to the team of skilled attorneys at Koenig & Owen, LLC, in Columbus, as soon as you can. We have an abundance of experience in the legal field, and we are ready to use it all to assist you with your case.

Consequences of Statutory Rape Convictions in Ohio

Convicted statutory rapists in the state of Ohio typically face three distinct types of negative consequences. They are:

  • Criminal punishments
  • Collateral consequences, and
  • Sex offender registration

Each of these consequences can have a profound negative impact on an offender’s life and prospects for the future.

Criminal Punishments

When the state of Ohio finds a Columbus resident guilty of statutory rape, it hands them a criminal punishment in line with the following sentencing guidelines:

  • Felonies of the First Degree: A prison term of up to 16.5 years and a fine of up to $20,000.
  • Felonies of the Second Degree: A prison term of up to 12 years and a fine of up to $15,000
  • Felonies of the Third Degree: A prison term of up to 60 months and a fine of up to $10,000
  • Felonies of the Fourth Degree: A prison term of up to 18 months and a fine of up to $5,000
  • Felonies of the Fifth Degree: A prison term of up to 12 months and a fine of up to $2,500
  • Misdemeanors of the First Degree: A jail term of up to 180 days and a fine of up to $1,000

Offenders with lengthy criminal records tend to receive significantly harsher sentences than people who have never been in trouble with the law before.

Collateral Consequences

Once a Columbus resident has a statutory rape conviction on their criminal record, they are sure to experience collateral consequences like:

  • Trouble Landing a Job: Hiring managers in Columbus are often hesitant to hire convicted criminals.
  • Professional Licensing Issues: Many licensing boards refuse to approve applications from felons.
  • Immigration Challenges: Federal authorities have the right to deport non-citizen felons when they finish their prison term.
  • Difficulty Finding Housing: Most landlords in the Columbus area have policies against renting to felons.
  • Loss of Gun Ownership Rights: The state of Ohio does not allow convicted felons to purchase, use, or carry firearms.
  • Challenges Getting Student Loans: The federal government does not typically disburse student loans to felons.

Offenders in Ohio typically continue to experience these collateral consequences for the rest of their lives – unless they can get their records sealed or convince a judge to overturn their conviction.

Sex Offender Registration

When the state of Ohio convicts people of sexual crimes, it requires them to register as sex offenders. The length of time they must stay on this list, and the frequency with which they have to update their record, depends on the tier in which the court places them:

  • Tier I: Register once a year for 15 years
  • Tier II: Register every 180 days for 25 years
  • Tier III: Register every 90 days for the remainder of their life

Judges usually place convicted statutory rapists in either Tier II or Tier III.

For as long as they remain on the registry, sex offenders must follow certain rules and adhere to specific restrictions, like:

  • Restrictions on housing
  • Restrictions on alcohol consumption
  • Restrictions on employment options
  • Restrictions on internet usage
  • Restrictions on communication with minors

At Koenig & Owen, LLC, we know how destructive the consequences of statutory rape convictions in the state of Ohio can be. That is why we fight so tirelessly to help our clients get their charges dismissed. If you would like to have us go to battle on your behalf, please get in touch with us today.

Defenses Against Ohio Statutory Rape Charges

When Ohio prosecutors accuse Columbus residents of engaging in sexual contact or conduct with a minor, they can often get the case against them dismissed by:

  • Proving that they were elsewhere at the time of the offense
  • Arguing that the prosecution does not have enough evidence
  • Claiming that the police violated their constitutional rights during the investigation
  • Proving that the victim lied about their age

Would you like to have our skilled legal team in Columbus devise an effective defense strategy for you? Then please send us a message online today to arrange an initial consultation at our headquarters.

The Premier Statutory Rape Defense Lawyers in Columbus, Ohio

When you need a seasoned attorney to help you fight back against your statutory rape charge, you can always rely on Koenig & Owen, LLC. Our legal team has the experience and knowledge required to handle just about any case. To set up a free consultation at our law office in Central Ohio, all you need to do is give us a call.