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What Are the Penalties for Sexual Assault in Utah?

 Posted on June 28, 2022 in Sex crimes

salt lake city criminal defense lawyerThere are multiple situations where a person may face criminal charges. All charges should be taken seriously, since a conviction can result in penalties such as fines, time in prison, periods of probation or home confinement, and other consequences. However, some offenses, such as sex crimes, are more serious than others, and they can not only lead to criminal consequences, but multiple other areas of a person’s life may be affected, including their personal reputation and their ability to obtain a job or find a place to live. Sexual assault or rape is one of the most commonly prosecuted sexual offenses, and those who have been accused of these crimes will need to understand the nature of the alleged offense and their options for defending against these charges.

Charges and Penalties for Rape in Utah

The Utah Criminal Code defines rape as engaging in sexual intercourse with a person without receiving consent. This offense may involve any acts of sexual penetration. Rape is a first-degree felony, and at the lowest level, it carries a minimum sentence of five years and a maximum sentence of life in prison. If a person allegedly caused a serious bodily injury to the victim, or if they were under 18 years old at the time of the offense and had previously been convicted of sexual assault or sexual abuse, the minimum sentence is 15 years. If a person over the age of 18 had previously been convicted of a “grievous” sexual offense, they may face a sentence of life in prison without parole.

When defending against accusations of sexual assault, the issue of consent is one of the most important concerns to address. The Utah Criminal Code details multiple circumstances in which an act of sexual intercourse or sexual contact may be without consent, including:

  • The alleged victim expressly denied consent through their words or actions.

  • A person allegedly used force, violence, concealment, or surprise to overcome the alleged victim.

  • A person allegedly coerced someone into engaging in sexual acts through the use of threats against the alleged victim or others.

  • The alleged victim was unconscious or unable to resist, including in situations where a person allegedly used “date rape” drugs or otherwise caused the alleged victim to become intoxicated or impaired without their knowledge.

  • The alleged victim believed that the alleged perpetrator was someone else.

  • The alleged victim had a mental impairment that caused them to be unable to understand the nature or consequences of sexual acts or to resist the actions of the alleged perpetrator.

  • The alleged victim was under the age of 14.

  • The alleged victim was under the age of 18, and the alleged perpetrator was a parent, guardian, or another person in a position of “special trust,” such as a babysitter, teacher, coach, doctor, counselor, religious leader, scout leader, or employer.

  • The alleged victim was between the ages of 14 and 18, and the alleged perpetrator was more than three years older than the alleged victim.

Contact Our Davis County Sexual Assault Defense Attorneys

If you have been accused of rape, sexual assault, or a related offense, you will need to be sure you have legal representation by an attorney who has experience with these types of cases. At Collins Rupp, P.C., we have helped numerous clients defend against alleged sex crimes, and we can help you determine your best options for defense. Contact our Salt Lake City sex crime defense lawyers at 385-777-2753 to schedule a free consultation and learn how we can help with your case.


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