Call Us865-281-1000

Bank of America Building
550 Main Street SW, Suite 775
Knoxville, TN 37902

Knox County Rape Defense Attorney

Campbell County Sex Crimes Defense Lawyer

Criminal Lawyer in Knoxville for Clients Charged with Sexual Battery

Sex crimes represent some of the most serious offenses in all of criminal law. If you have a sex crime conviction on your criminal record, you are likely to encounter challenges for the rest of your life. You might struggle to get a job, find affordable housing, or even qualify for professional or educational programs. Just the allegation of a sex crime could be enough to destroy your reputation.

At the law firm of Jeffrey Coller, Knoxville Criminal Defense Attorney, we understand that many offenses fall under the category of sex crimes. Different states use different terminology for the various crimes, so if you have been charged with a particular offense, you might be confused about what the charges against you mean and what penalties you might be facing. Our team is prepared to help you fight allegations of rape, sexual battery, and any other Tennessee sex crime.

Rape Charges in Tennessee

In recent years, troubling headlines about celebrities and high profile cases have created a great deal of confusion about terms like "rape," "sexual assault," and "sexual violence." These words are often used interchangeably in casual conversation, but under Tennessee law, there are certain terms used to describe specific types of sex crimes.

Rape, for example, is a distinct criminal offense in Tennessee. Tennessee law defines rape as "unlawful sexual penetration of a victim" if the act occurs:

  • By force or coercion;
  • By fraud;
  • Without the victim's consent; or
  • When the perpetrator knows that the victim is mentally incapacitated or physically helpless.

Rape is a Class B felony punishable by up to 30 years in prison and $25,000 in fines. A conviction will also require the offender to register with the state's Sex Offender Registry.

Aggravated rape is a Class A felony that may be charged if the victim is injured or the rape involved any type of weapon. An aggravated rape charge is also possible if the perpetrator had help in committing the offense. A Class A felony conviction could result in up to 60 years in prison, $50,000 in fines, and registration as a sex offender. The age and status of the victim, as well as the victim's relationship to the perpetrator, could also affect the charges and potential sentences.

Understanding Sexual Battery

Any type of unlawful sexual contact that is not sexual penetration falls under the offense of sexual battery in Tennessee. Sexual battery is often referred to as sexual assault in everyday conversation, but Tennessee law does not include an offense of sexual assault.

Sexual battery may be charged for any unlawful sexual contact occurring under the same circumstances that apply to rape, including force, coercion, lack of consent, and fraud. The offense is a Class E felony that carries up to six years of incarceration, $3,000 in fines, and sex offender registration. Aggravated sexual battery involves the use of a weapon, bodily injury, or aid from another person in committing the act. This charge is a Class B felony.

Contact an Experienced Sex Crimes Attorney

At the firm of Jeffrey Coller, Knoxville Criminal Defense Attorney, we handle all types of sex crimes cases, including rape, aggravated rape, sexual battery, and aggravated sexual battery. We also help clients charged with statutory rape, sexual contact with an authority figure, and sexual contact with a minor. Our team will fully investigate the circumstances of your case and help you explore all of your available options.

If you or someone you love has been charged with rape or sexual battery, contact our office. Call 865-281-1000 for a free, confidential consultation today. Our firm serves clients in Knox County, Blount County, Anderson County, Campbell County, Union County, and the surrounding areas.

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