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Out of all possible criminal charges, charges involving acts of sexual violence are often some of the most serious, with potentially devastating consequences. Virginia residents facing sex crime charges may want to contact a criminal defense attorney to determine the best way to defend themselves against these accusations.

Many people accused of committing sexual assault or other crimes of sexual violence use one of two defenses. First, they may establish innocence by showing that there was technically no way they could have committed the crime. The best way to do this is by presenting an alibi, that is, someone who was with them at the time of the alleged crime. The alibi may take the stand and testify that he or she was with the accused, and therefore the accused was not with the alleged victim at the time of the supposed crime. If the accused was by themselves at the time of the crime, they may be able to present hotel receipts, store receipts and other documentation showing that they were not at the place where the crime occurred. Photo evidence of the accused at other locations may also be useful in proving their innocence. Remember, it is the prosecutor's job to show that the accused is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. If the accused can give the jury enough reasonable doubt to question their involvement in the crime, they may be acquitted.

Another common defense used in sexual assault cases is the defense of consent. If the accused can prove that they and the alleged victim engaged in consensual sexual activity, the charges may be dropped altogether. Proving consent is rarely easy in these cases, as the alleged victim is unlikely to admit that they consented to sexual activity. However, the accused may be able to help their case by establishing their relationship with the alleged victim and presenting any evidence they have that shows the victim wanted to engage in sexual activity with them. It is important to note that if the alleged victim is a minor or incapacitated, they may be unable to legally consent to sexual activity.

If you have been charged with a crime involving sexual activity, you have the option to discuss the details of your case with a criminal defense attorney. Your attorney may then come up with a customized defense to fit the specifics of your case.

Source: FindLaw, "Sexual Assault Defenses," accessed on March 26, 2018

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