There are dozens of sex crimes with which a person can be charged under Oklahoma criminal law. However, when most people think of sex crimes the first offense that comes to mind is rape. While rape may be one of the most well-known sex offenses, it is also one of the most widely misunderstood.
Rape, by definition, is nonconsensual sexual penetration. The term "nonconsensual" conjures images of forcible rape; however, the most commonly prosecuted rape crimes do not involve physical force at all. In fact, many of them involve apparently consensual sex. Unfortunately for the men and women charged in Oklahoma district courts with second degree rape, just because a person seems to offer consent does not mean he or she has the legal ability to do so.
Definition of Rape under Oklahoma Law
The criminal code of the Oklahoma statutes define rape in 21 O.S. § 1111. According to the state law, rape is an act of sexual intercourse, including vaginal or anal penetration, occurring under a specific set of circumstances including force or threat of violence; deception; incapacitation by drugs, alcohol, or other anesthetizing agent; or where a victim is unable through age, mental illness, custodial status, or student status to provide legal consent to sex.
State district attorneys prosecute several types of rape:
- First Degree Rape or Forcible Rape
- Second Degree Rape or Statutory Rape
- Rape by Instrumentation
- Date Rape and Spousal Rape
- Forcible Sodomy
Spousal rape and date rape are not individual categories of rape; rather, they are terms often used to describe specific types of first and second degree rape.
Forcible sodomy is not technically rape, as it may not involve anal or vaginal penetration. Typically forcible sodomy involves nonconsensual oral sex or oral copulation with a person who cannot legally consent to such an encounter.
According to statute, rape is sexual intercourse that occurs:
1. Where the victim is under sixteen (16) years of age;
2. Where the victim is incapable through mental illness or any other unsoundness of mind, whether temporary or permanent, of giving legal consent;
3. Where force or violence is used or threatened, accompanied by apparent power of execution to the victim or to another person;
4. Where the victim is intoxicated by a narcotic or anesthetic agent, administered by or with the privity of the accused as a means of forcing the victim to submit;
5. Where the victim is at the time unconscious of the nature of the act and this fact is known to the accused;
6. Where the victim submits to sexual intercourse under the belief that the person committing the act is a spouse, and this belief is induced by artifice, pretense, or concealment practiced by the accused or by the accused in collusion with the spouse with intent to induce that belief. In all cases of collusion between the accused and the spouse to accomplish such act, both the spouse and the accused, upon conviction, shall be deemed guilty of rape;
7. Where the victim is under the legal custody or supervision of a state agency, a federal agency, a county, a municipality or a political subdivision and engages in sexual intercourse with a state, federal, county, municipal or political subdivision employee or an employee of a contractor of the state, the federal government, a county, a municipality or a political subdivision that exercises authority over the victim; or
8. Where the victim is at least sixteen (16) years of age and is less than twenty (20) years of age and is a student, or under the legal custody or supervision of any public or private elementary or secondary school, junior high or high school, or public vocational school, and engages in sexual intercourse with a person who is eighteen (18) years of age or older and is an employee of the same school system.
Furthermore, a person may be guilty of spousal rape if sexual intercourse is achieved through force or violence or the threat of force or violence accompanied by the apparent power to carry out the threat.
In subsequent sections of the law, these acts are divided into those considered Rape in the First Degree and those encompassing Rape in the Second Degree.
Sex Offender Registration for Convicted Rapists
Both first degree rape and statutory rape are punished severely, carrying heavy fines and lengthy prison sentences. Furthermore, both crimes are considered Level III sex offenses, which require lifetime registration in accordance with the Oklahoma Sex Offender Registration Act. This means that a person who has sex with someone who is completely willing but unable to provide legal consent, if convicted, will be branded as a rapist for life, unable to go near a school, work with children, or even visit a park as prohibited by sex offender status.
Accused of Rape in Oklahoma? We Are Here to Help
If you are facing rape charges in Oklahoma, time is critical in building a strong defense. Our experienced attorneys work quickly to gather evidence to support your defense, and we will carefully examine all avenues to bring the best possible resolution to your case. Backed by a continuing successful record of sex crime defense representation, we bring our skill and expertise to every aspect of your case, from investigation through court proceedings. Call today or submit our online case review form for a confidential, no-risk evaluation of your case.