First Degree Sexual Assault in Rhode Island

Nearly a year after an off-campus party that involved underage drinking, Navy investigators at the Naval Academy in Maryland continue to investigate allegations of a sexual assault.  These allegations are not out of the ordinary for the Naval Academy.  The New York Times noted that the Academy had 51 total reports of “unwanted sexual contact during the academic years from 2011 through 2013.”  Congress has contemplated removing sexual assault cases from the military chain of command and allowing prosecutors and law enforcement professionals to take over.

Rhode Island Sexual Assault Crimes

Here in rhode island, the General Laws outline four different scenarios which may constitute first degree sexual assault.  Pursuant to §11-37-2, first degree sexual assault occurs when a person engages in sexual penetration with another under one of the following circumstances:

  1. the accused knows or should know that the victim is mentally incapacitated, mentally disabled, or physically helpless;
  2. the accused uses force or coercion;
  3. the accused, through concealment or by the element of surprise, is able to overcome the victim; or
  4. the accused engages in the medical treatment or examination of the victim for the purpose of sexual arousal, gratification, or stimulation.

rhode island takes first degree assault charges seriously and a person who commits sexual assault in the first degree faces prison for a mandatory minimum of ten years and may be imprisoned for life.

If you or someone you know is charged with sexual assault, it is important to contact a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.  The Law Office of John R. Grasso can be reached at 401-272-4001. 

Source: The New York Times