You must have heard of the term oral copulation once in your lifetime. But did you know that oral copulation can also be considered a severe crime in the United States? In other words, oral copulation is the legal term that is used for the act of oral sex or oral intercourse. In this article, we will be discussing the situations that turn the act of oral copulation into a crime.
What Is Oral Copulation?
Before we dive into the matter of whether oral copulation is a crime in the US, it is necessary to know its definition. Oral copulation is considered the act that is generally referred to as oral sex in layperson’s terms.
Moreover, for legal purposes, the act of oral copulation is known as sexual contact between one individual’s mouth and the other’s genitals or anus. Similarly, the act of oral copulation is perfectly normal when done between two consenting adults.
However, oral copulation is a criminal offense when done without the consent of one individual indulged in the act. We will discuss this in detail later on in this article.
When is Oral Copulation A Crime in California?
Generally, the act of oral copulation, also known as oral sex, is not a crime with the presence of prior consent. Similarly, this means if your partner has agreed to indulge in the act, it will not be a crime.
This means that if your partner has agreed with the act of giving or receiving oral sex from you, they do not hold the right to charge you for the act of forcing upon free will. Moreover, the act is only considered to be illegal when there is no consent from either of the parties indulged in the act.
Similarly, the act of forcing an individual to engage in oral sex either through coercion, fear, or physical force is considered a violation of Penal Code 288a. Moreover, Penal Code 288a states oral copulation is illegal when the act has been forced upon an individual’s free will. Along with this, if an individual is unconscious through sleeping or under the influence of drugs or alcohol and has been forced into oral sex, it is unlawful.
Likewise, the act of oral copulation is also illegal if conducted with an individual who has not reached the age of consent. This means that if you have indulged in oral sex with a minor (an individual below the age of 18), it will be a crime.
Depending on the charge and nature of the act, penalties of this act shall apply. We shall be discussing the penalties of oral copulation later in the article.
What Are the Penalties of Oral Copulation?
The penalties of oral copulation depend upon the nature of the act. For instance, if you have been charged with the act of inflicting bodily harm and someone else has initiated oral copulation through force, you will receive different kinds of penalties.
Furthermore, if you are charged for conducting oral copulation on someone who has not reached the age of providing consent, then a different penalty will be incurred. The laws related to oral copulation are complex. Due to this, you must consult with an experienced criminal lawyer before your case goes to trial.
Moreover, when an individual is charged with a sex crime, it is essential to understand the consequences that will stay on one’s life even after serving jail time. A sex offender in the state of California is noted to register themselves as a “sex offender” in state and federal register offices.
Moreover, the registration as a sex offender is generally open for public viewing. Similarly, your employer, community, or future spouse/ partner can search your name in the registry. Depending on the nature of the offense, you might be required to register for ten years or the rest of your life.
Furthermore, to avoid wrongful convictions or reduce the charge, it is wise to consult an experienced criminal defense attorney to work out your case.
Defenses When Charged with The Crime of Oral Copulation
The legal defenses that apply to your case depending upon the nature of your act. Due to this, it is wise to consult with your local criminal defense attorney, who has expertise in state laws, to save you from the various repercussions of a sex crime charge.
On the other hand, a criminal lawyer will fight your case to prove your innocence in the situation. Similarly, they also can reduce or dismiss charges pressed against you.
Let us view some of the defenses that are under Penal Code 288a.
As we have discussed earlier, if you acquire consent from your partner before participating in oral sex, then they do not have the right to press charges against you. Moreover, if you convey that your partner provided consent before indulging in oral sex with you, your criminal lawyer will work out your innocence while the case goes to trial.
Moreover, you have to keep in mind that to prove consent in the case, the other party must not be below the age of 18, intoxicated, or suffering from a disability that does not allow them to provide consent legally.
Lack of Evidence
Before being charged with a crime, there must be enough evidence that you’ve committed an illegal act. Similarly, lacking proof can make it difficult for the other party to press charges under Penal Code 288a.
Moreover, the prosecuting party might present evidence if there is a presence of bruising or a witness who has seen the sex crime happen. Similarly, polygraphs can be used to prove the case of either party.
Another defense that you can prove if charged with a sex crime is a false accusation. The other person might accuse you of committing a crime for various reasons. These could include retaliation, jealousy, or anger. For instance, you and your ex-partner have engaged in sexual acts after separation. Due to this, later, they might accuse you of committing a sex crime for various emotional reasons.
Moreover, you might also be falsely accused by an intoxicated person who might not remember the actual accuser. For example, the drunk person only retains a particular facial feature or hair color that resembles you. In such a case, you will be wrongly accused of committing a sex crime against that other party.
Moreover, in such cases, you should contact your local criminal defense lawyer to understand better how your charges can be removed or reduced.
Now, you have a better understanding of the definition, penalties, and defenses related to the act of oral copulation. Remember that the act itself between two consenting adults is not illegal. But if you are observed to conduct the same with a minor, intoxicated party, or someone who doesn’t consent to the act, it is considered to be illegal. So, stay safe out there and indulge in sexual acts with others with caution.