How to Get Statutory Rape Charges Dropped?Published: Apr 13, 2021 in Sex Crimes, Sex Crimes Involving Children
Statutory rape, or sexual assault of a child, in Texas can be a difficult charge to defend. If you’re an adult who had sexual contact with someone younger than 17, it doesn’t matter what you thought the person’s age was, what may have been a reasonable belief, or what that person told you.
To have charges dropped, you need a valid and robust defense so you avoid a conviction and prison.
What is Statutory Rape?
Under state law, someone 16 years old or younger can’t legally consent to sexual contact. Subsection 22.011(a)(2)(A) through (E) of the Texas Penal Code states that whether or not you knew the child’s age at the time, you are prohibited from intentionally or knowingly:
- A. Penetrating the sexual organ or anus by any means
- B. Penetrating the mouth with your sexual organ
- C. Causing the sexual organ to come into contact or penetrate the sexual organ, anus, or mouth of someone else
- D. Causing the anus to encounter the sexual organ, anus, or mouth or someone else, or
- E. Causing the mouth to encounter another person’s sexual organ or anus
When Prosecutors Drop Statutory Rape Charges
Defenses that make carrying the burden of proving your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt very difficult or impossible should result in ending your case.
There may be several reasons these charges should be withdrawn by the prosecutor or dismissed by a judge. These reasons can include one or more of the following.
The Accuser’s Claims Are False
It could very well be your word against your accuser’s. There may be evidence this person has a history of not being truthful, falsely filing police complaints, or threatening lawsuits against alleged attackers to make money.
Since the prosecution has the burden of proof, if enough doubt can cloud the claims, a prosecutor may withdraw the case
If there were people present at the time, witness statements denying the accuser’s version of events could also lead to charges being withdrawn.
Security or smartphone video of your interaction with the person may also help your case
Witness Supported Alibi
You may have an alibi supported by witnesses or other evidence. The prosecution’s claims may be false or a case of mistaken identity. If the alleged victim says you committed the crime at a certain time and place, and you can establish you were elsewhere, the charges should be withdrawn or dismissed.
False DNA Tests
If DNA supposedly implicated you, a defense may be the tests were improperly done, the results aren’t trustworthy, or the police lab got the results wrong – the DNA found on the victim or at the scene doesn’t match yours.
Unlawfully Obtained Evidence
How the police obtained evidence against you may have violated your constitutional rights and shouldn’t be used. Police may not have had sufficient grounds for a search warrant. Officers may not have given you Miranda warnings early enough during your arrest, so statements you made should be excluded.
Plea Bargain Agreement
Solid defenses may result in charges being withdrawn or dismissed. If not, the prosecutor may want you to plead guilty to a lesser charge as part of a plea bargain agreement.
Instead of going through a trial, you could plead guilty to another charge and accept an agreed-upon sentence. If we feel a plea bargain agreement is in your best interests, we’ll recommend you accept it, but it’s your choice to make.
Accused of Statutory Rape? Call a Lawyer
The Law Offices of Ned Barnett can fight back against false claims and misunderstandings. This can result in your case being dismissed, withdrawn, or a favorable plea agreement to reduce the impact on your life.