Is Rape Considered a Violent Crime? (PC 261)
Most everyone understands that rape is a serious criminal offense, but many people do not know whether a rape conviction could lead to a strike being added to your criminal record under California’s Three Strikes law.
You will receive a strike on your criminal record in California if you are convicted of a “serious or violent” crime. So, is the crime of rape under PC 261 considered a violent crime?
The Crime of Rape (PC 261)
Under California Penal Code Section 261, rape is any “non-consensual sexual intercourse accompanied by means of threat, force, or fraud.” Essentially, this law makes it illegal to use force, threat of force, or deceit to make another person have sexual intercourse with you.
If you are convicted of rape under PC 261, you face up to eight years in state prison and fines up to $10,000. You will also be required to register as a sex offender under PC 290. You may also receive a strike on your criminal record under California’s Three Strikes law if you are convicted of rape.
What is a “Violent Crime?” (PC 667)
In California, there is a list of 23 crimes that are considered “serious and violent” offenses. If you are convicted of one of these offenses, you will receive a strike on your criminal record under the Three Strikes law.
Under PC 667, if you have a prior strike on your record and you are convicted of a second strike, your sentence could be doubled. If you have two strikes on your record, a third or subsequent strike offense is punishable by 25 years to life.
Is Rape as a Violent Crime?
The crime of rape is considered a violent felony, but only under two circumstances:
- When it was accomplished through the use of force, violence, duress, menace or fear of immediate and unlawful bodily injury; and
- When it was accomplished by threat of retaliation against the victim or another person in the future and there is a reasonable possibility that the perpetrator had was going to execute the threat
Thus, rape is considered a violent crime and also counts as a strike on your criminal record if the crime was committed by force or by threat.
Having a strike on your criminal record is a severe penalty. You should speak to our experienced rape defense lawyers immediately if you are accused of rape. Our attorneys may be able to help you avoid receiving a strike on your record.
Contact the Rape Defense Lawyers at Wallin & Klarich Today
If you or a loved one is facing accusations of rape, it is important that you speak with an experienced sex crimes attorney immediately. At Wallin & Klarich, our skilled and knowledgeable sex crimes attorneys have more than 35 years of experience successfully defending clients facing rape allegations. Let us help you now.
With offices in Orange County, Riverside, San Bernardino, Victorville, West Covina, Torrance, Los Angeles and San Diego, you can find an experienced Wallin & Klarich sex crimes attorney available near you no matter where you are located.
Call our office today at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245 for a free phone consultation. We will be there when you call.