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What evidence does the DA need to convict on statutory rape?

Merced, CA |

My son had a child with a 15 year old girl he was 17 @ the time. The girl lied about her age. Neither the mom or girl wants charges pressed. Yet the DA filed charges. While fighting those charges another girl claimed my son raped her.There is no way this happened.She got angry when he wanted nothing to do with her.The DA consolidated the 2 cases to make the 2nd one stronger. There is no DNA evidence. She has changed her story many times. Now its time for trial she will not even return DAs calls yet he is still persuing these bogus charges. He wants him to plead to 2 stat. rapes with time served,1 strike and probation for something he did not do. He says if he doesnt take the deal he is looking @ 15 years. I say let the jury decide!

Attorney Answers 8


  1. Is there a question here or not? Do you want toknow whether your son could be found guilty if the case goes to trial? Yes, he could. Could he be found not guilty? Yes, he could.

    Should he take the plea or fight the case? He has to make that decision himself in consultation with his attorney.


  2. I understand what you are saying and your distress at the unfairness of this.

    What proof is required for your son to be convicted? The testimony of the girls. Or his alleged confession (see link below on talking to police).

    One other thing to consider is whether by accepting the offer your son will be on a sexual predator list. I don't see that mentioned.

    If he is convicted as charged, he will be.

    No one here can advise you on whether or not this is what your son should do. In the end, it is his decision. He and you should be talking with his lawyer.
    If any answer on AVVO helps you, please mark it as "helpful" or "best answer" to help AVVO know which answers to show others.
    Thank you.

    --- Experienced Criminal Defense Lawyer in Madison, Wisconsin
    http://addbalance.com

    --- Talking to the Police - Advice from Lawyers and Police
    http://addbalance.com/police.htm

    --- Miranda Rights (and Wrongs)
    http://addbalance.com/miranda_rights.htm

    Confidential information should not be disclosed in this Internet forum. I am a Wisconsin lawyer. The laws in each jurisdiction can be very different. I cannot give legal advice over the internet nor can I establish an attorney client relationship with you. You should NOT assume or otherwise conclude that there is an attorney -client relationship between any reader and this writer or his firm. These comments are only guideposts. They are not subject to any privilege protections. Indeed, these internet communications are neither privileged nor confidential. Accordingly, those using this form of communication need to be guarded in what they write. Because of the nature of these communications the information is general only and should not be relied upon in any specific case. This internet site is public forum, where the communications are not confidential or privileged. There may very well be merit to your defense or position in this type of situation. However, there are hardly sufficient details for an attorney to provide you with some path to follow. It is imperative that ALL of the facts in a particular situation be examined. No conclusion can be drawn from the communication that you have provided. There are some matters that are just better handled by an attorney familiar with the procedures of the courts in your area. Most, if not all, legal matters should not be handled via internet communication. At best, the responders on this site can give you a few hints and guidance. To deal with a legal problem, nothing is better than to consult with a lawyer who will give you some time and advice. If you cannot afford an attorney, there should be agencies in your area that can provide discounted, or even free, legal services. Experienced Criminal Defense Lawyer in Madison, Dane County, Wisconsin http://addbalance.com Talking to the Police - Advice from Lawyers and Police: http://addbalance.com/police.htm


  3. The attorney from Wisconsin wouldn't know this, but there is no such thing as a "sexual predator list" in California. We do have a sex offender registry and unlawful intercourse (otherwise known as statutory rape) is not one of the offenses that requires registration, although a standard rape conviction does require registration. To prove statutory rape, the prosecution must prove that your son had intercourse with someone under the age of 18 and did not reasonably believe that the person was over 18. This is a misdemeanor when the victim is within 3 yrs. of age of the accused. Unlawful intercourse is never a strike, so you must have that confused. If your son pleads to two counts of unlawful intercourse, he will not have any strikes. To prove rape, the prosecution must prove that your son had intercourse with someone without consent. Rape is a strike, whether your son is charged as a juvenile or an adult. If he is charged as a juvenile, he does not get a jury, he gets a hearing before a judge. Only if he is charged as an adult will he get a jury.


  4. The wild card is whether your son is being prosecuted as a juvenile or an adult. If you are really being told that he is looking at 15 years, he is being prosecuted as an adult and will have a jury trial on this case unless he waives it (which he should not do).

    Mr. Pullman gave you a lot of valuable information, and I hope you understand and consider it. One additional tidbit is that if your son is convicted of rape (NOT statutory rape of a woman within three years of his own age, but sex without consent of his partner, i.e., what most people mean when they say rape), he will be a registered sex offender for the rest of his life. That designation has consequences beyond the criminal courts. For example, in some cities, despite case law that arguably runs to the contrary, that designation can limit where he lives.

    If your son doesn't already have a very good lawyer, you should find one for him immediately. The stakes are never higher than what you've described.

    When I respond to a question posted on Avvo, I provide information for a general purpose. In reviewing my answer, you are specifically warned that your use of, or reliance upon any response that I provide would be a bad idea. I do not have all relevant background or facts related to your matter, and am not in a position to give you legal advice. Further, your review, use of, or reliance upon any response by me does not establish an attorney-client relationship between us and does not qualify as a legal consultation for any purpose.


  5. I'd suggest hiring an attorney for your son if you haven't already. These are both extremely serious charges. It sounds like he is being charged as an adult? I am not clear.

    You say "let the jury decide!" Make no mistake. A jury trial is stressful and unpredictable. The better the lawyer the more improved chances at victory. Two charges of unlawful sex with a minor, sometimes mistakenly labeled "statutory rape" is not a strike. The regular rape charge is a strike.

    Good luck.

    The above information does not establish an attorney client relationship nor is it meant to provide legal advice.


  6. I'm not sure why a Wisconsin lawyer is giving advice about a California legal matter either. All of the attorneys from California are correct, Ma'am. You son seems to only face unlawful sexual relations charges given that he is within three years of the victim. These charges do not carry any strike potential.

    If your son is charged as a juvenile then we will not have the right to a jury, but I can't elimage any judge finding your son guilty of rape given the facts you have described. You must speak to an attorney as soon as possible. And don't take any advice from anyone practicing law without a license in the State of California.


  7. My California colleagues have given you good advice, and there is not much more to add. Make sure your son has a good attorney.

    Legal disclaimer: The answer provided is general in nature and because not all facts are known, it should not be construed as legal advice. The answer does not create an attorney/client relationship. You should speak to an attorney for further information.


  8. Is there no "Romeo and Juliet" law where you live? If not, there ought to be. Find out about this in California.

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