What happens if the people who pressed charges on my cousin for sexual assault, don't show up to court or leave the state?

Asked almost 2 years ago - Houston, TX

My cousin dated and had sexual intercourse with a 16 year old girl. The mother found the girl in a bad condition one day, the girl said she had been raped, so the lady pressed charges on my cousin immediately without asking if it was him who raped her or not. A couple weeks ago, the lady and daughter move out of the state for no reason. We were told that she found out her daughter had been raped by her(the girl's) own brother. Either the lady didn't want for her son to go to jail or she got scared to get in more trouble for pressing charges on the wrong person. My cousin was wrong for dating a minor and I do know he deserves some sort of punishment for it, but he is innocent from the rape charges. What can be done? Would the case be dismissed now?

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Evan Edward Pierce-Jones

    Contributor Level 18

    Answered . Your cousin should hire a good criminal defense lawyer at this point.

    Here's why. Your cousin is accused of a very serious offense. Because of that, his credibility will not be good with the police. And, as a general rule it is a very bad idea for the accused to discuss the charges with the police anyway. There's an old saying, "Not many fish get pulled out of the lake that don't open their mouth first."

    A good criminal defense lawyer can deal with the police and prosecutor for your brother if it comes to that.

    Also, keep in mind that a 16 year old is below the age of consent in Texas, and to have sex with a 16 year old is still a crime. There is a defense, however, if the two people are no more than 3 years apart in age and both consented to the sex act. If that does not fit your cousin's situation, even if all you say is true, and the sex was consensual, he could still face charges for a serious felony.

    And, if the prosecutor finds the alleged victim out of state, they might well fly the person back to testify. Not out of the woods just because the alleged victim moved.

    So, again, your cousin needs the help of a good criminal defense lawyer NOW.

    Answers on Avvo are for general information purposes only and should not be relied upon as legal advice. No... more
  2. Harry Edward Hudson Jr

    Contributor Level 20

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . If charges hve been fied, counsin should have an attorney. Best source of information about the status of the case will be with that attorney as he/she would have all of the reports including witness statements.

    The above is not intended as legal advice. The response does not constitute the creation of an attorney client... more
  3. Daniel Nelson Deasy

    Contributor Level 20

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . Surely your cousin has hired a criminal defense attorney, or had one appointed, right? If not, get one NOW. If so, bring all of these questions to that attorney to discuss. Many times, prosecutors will dismiss cases where victims disappear, but sometimes they do not.

    In no way am I offering you legal advice, and in no way has my comment created an attorney-client relationship.... more

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