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Rape of a Child

Rape of a child is a crime against the person in Massachusetts. There are several different categories of the offense of rape of a child, each containing slightly differing elements.

Rape and abuse of a child, commonly known as statutory rape, requires that a defendant 1) have sexual intercourse 2) with a child who is under 16 years of age. Only those two elements are required. Use of force is not an element of the crime.

Penalty for conviction of this offense carries a sentence of imprisonment for life or for any term of years.

Rape of a child by force requires that a defendant have sexual intercourse with a child who is under 16 years of age and compels the child to submit by force and against his will or compels such child to submit by threat of bodily injury.

Penalty for conviction of this offense carries a sentence of imprisonment for life or for any term of years.

Rape of child aggravated by age difference between defendant and victim, or when committed by mandated reports

This offense requires the elements of rape and abuse of a child, that being a defendant 1) have sexual intercourse 2) with a child who is under 16 years of age AND one of the following:

  1. The defendant is more than 5 years older than the victim and the victim is under 12 years of age,
  2. The defendant is more than 10 years older than the victim and the victim is between 12 years and 16 years, or
  3. At the time of the intercourse, the defendant was a mandated reporter.

Penalty for conviction of this offense carries a sentence of a mandatory minimum term of incarceration for 10 years and a maximum life sentence. The penalty for conviction of this offense is very severe and prevents the convicted person from being eligible for probation, parole, work release, furlough or any reduction in sentence for good conduct until they serve 10 years of incarceration for such sentence.

Rape and Abuse of Child by Certain Previously Convicted Offenders

This offense also requires the elements of rape and abuse of a child, that being a defendant 1) have sexual intercourse 2) with a child who is under 16 years of age AND that the defendant have been previously convicted of or adjudicated delinquent or as a youthful offender for certain enumerated sexual offenses involving children. Said offenses include rape and abuse of a child and rape of a child with force.

Penalty for a conviction of this offense carries a mandatory minimum term of incarceration for 15 years and a maximum life sentence. Penalties for this offense are also severe and prevent the convicted person from being eligible for probation, parole, work release, furlough or any reduction in sentence for good conduct until they serve 15 years of incarceration for such sentence.

Assault of a Child, Intent to Commit Rape

The offense of assault of a child with the intent to commit rape is essentially the attempted commission of statutory rape. Knowledge on the part of the defendant as to the victim’s age is not an element of the offense; therefore, a claim of lack of knowledge is not a defense. Additionally, consent of the victim is not a defense to the crime.

Penalty for a conviction of this offense carries a sentence of incarceration for life or for any number of years; for a defendant over age 18 years, any subsequent conviction for this offense carries a mandatory minimum sentence of incarceration of 5 years. If the defendant convicted of this offense committed the offense while armed with a weapon such as a rifle or firearm, said conviction carries a mandatory minimum sentence of incarceration of 10 years; and any subsequent conviction for a defendant over age 18 years carries a mandatory minimum sentence of incarceration of 15 years.

DelSignore Law is an Experienced Law Firm That is Here to Help You

A statutory rape charge is a serious charge that carries stiff penalties if convicted. You want to hire an attorney who has had experience in this area of the law. Feel free to contact us for a confidential and free consultation, at 781-686-5924.

Read more about what you can expect as you proceed through the court process and view some of our criminal defense case results online.

Client Reviews
★★★★★
Michael was very professional and explained the process clearly and told us to be patient. After one year the charges got dismissed in the trial. Excellent knowledge of the court systems in the area of Boston. Would highly recommend him Ashwani
★★★★★
A careless decision on my part left me facing charges which would have severely hampered my ability to stay employed and support myself. But attorney DelSignore's skillful analysis and challenging of the evidence against me resulted in a conviction on a lesser charge. Now I'll be able to go on with my life, having learned a lesson I'll never forget. Thank you, Michael. Scott
★★★★★
Mike stuck with my case for 3.5 years and always kept me informed regarding the status. Ultimately, because of his due diligence, we ended up with an OUI not guilty verdict. This case could have gone many ways but his thorough review of the case and exceptional preparedness for trial ultimately drove a positive outcome. Thank you Mike! David
★★★★★
Michael DelSignore did an amazing job with my case! Either him or his partner Julie was always available to answer any questions I had and helped walked me through the entire process. I could not have done it without them! I highly recommend choosing this law firm to deal with your legal needs, you will not be dissatisfied. Ashley
★★★★★
I cannot express the gratitude towards both Michael and Julie for their amazing work and help. It was a very stressful event and they certainly put me at as much ease as possible. From start to finish it took 14 months and all the way through they were both very engaged with me. Today was worth the wait, Michael was great in court and I was rightfully found not guilty. I would recommend Michael and Julie over and over again. Claire
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