In Virginia, being convicted of any sex crime results in severe punishment. Even a mere accusation of a minor sex offense, yet neither founded nor proved, can render long-lasting effects on the accused individual’s life. In several instances, court orders you, if you are convicted of a sex crime, to be registered as a sex offender. The label of a sex offender can affect your life in many ways: where you can live and work, whether you can socialize or not, custody of your children, and many other social stigmas, harming your life.
Virginia has broadly defined twenty crimes, which are identified to prosecute sexual assault and other related crimes in the state. Here are some of the frequently attempted crimes that the state has to overcome:
When a person sexually abuses a victim against their will, through force, or intimidation, or ruse, or coercion, or undue influence, the individual is found guilty of sexual batter, i.e. a Class 1 misdemeanor. The convicted individual has to face up to 12 months in prison and/or a maximum fine of $2500.
Infected Sexual Battery
When an individual, knowing that he/she is infected with HIV, syphilis, AIDS, hepatitis B, engages in any kind of sexual activity with the intent to transmit the infection to the victim, the person is guilty of infected sexual battery, a class 6 felony. Thus, the convicted has to face a maximum of 12 months in prison and/or a maximum fine of $2500.
Punishment upon Conviction of Third Misdemeanor Offense
When an individual is charged with sexual battery, attempted battery, and consensual intercourse with a minor, as well as has been convicted within the past 10 years for doing two or more of the offenses as specified, each occurring on a different date, then the person shall be guilty of a Class 6 felony. And hence, results in same punishment as awarded for attempted aggravated sexual battery, i.e. a maximum of five years in prison and/or $2500 as maximum fine.
Object Sexual Penetration
This involves inanimate anal or animate object sexual penetration and the guilty are punished for a maximum of life in prison.
It falls under class 1 misdemeanor and comes with a punishment of maximum 12 months in prison, and/or a fine of maximum $2500.
Attempted Sexual Crimes
Attempted felonies are considered as most serious sexual offenses, including:
- Attempted object sexual penetration, forcible sodomy, and rape are Class 4 felonies, causing the convicted of a crime to face 2-10 years in prison and a maximum fine of $100k.
- Attempted aggravated sexual battery is a charge which is class 6 felony and unique to Virginia. It comes with a maximum of 5 years in prison and/or $2500 as maximum fine.
- An accused is considered to be guilty of the aggravated sexual battery when he/she sexually abuses the victim forcefully without obtaining consent. It comes with 1-20 years of prison and/or the maximum fine of $100k.
All sex crime laws in Virginia typically reflect the societal norms of state, and therefore, subject to change with time as society changes.