sexual offense

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Definition - What does sexual offense mean?

A sexual offense is a felony crime where the perpetrator commits a sexual act against another person's will or upon a person incapable of consent due to diminished mental capacity or age. These types of offenses usually fall within the state jurisdiction and include charges of rape and sodomy. The punishment for such statutory crimes varies across states. Sexual Offenses can also be classified as federal crimes where the act involves behaviors such as dealing in child pornograpy or the buying or selling of children.

SureHire explains sexual offense

Sexual offense charges can vary in severity according to the classification of first, second, third, and fourth degree sexual offenses. Each class carries a punishment relative to the gravity of the crime committed, where first degree is the most severe and fourth degree is the least.

First degree sexual offenses are those acts that might involve engaging in a sexual act with the use of force, without consent. This criminal charge can carry punishment of 25 years to life imprisonment. Second degree sexual offenses may involve sexual activity with a person deemed to be underage, mentally or physically defective, or incapacitated. This offense carries a possible prison term of between 5 and 20 years. Third degree sexual offenses typically involve injuring another physically while engaging in sexual activity and is punishable by a maximum of 10 years in prison. Fourth degree sexual offenses cover a wider range of acts of a sexual nature but not necessarily intercourse, and might include those perpetrated by a person in a position of authority or statutory rape and may carry a sentence of 1 to 3 years in prison.

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