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Posts Tagged "Sexual Abuse"

5 Ways Marital Rape Can Happen

This is a Guest Post from Brett Podolsky, a Houston Criminal Attorney.

Marital rape is a form of sexual abuse often encountered in domestic violence cases. It refers to non-consensual sex act performed by a spouse. In many regions of the world, the spousal rape is still condoned and considered legal. However, most developing countries increasingly criminalize the act and impose severe penalties upon the perpetrator.

The cases of spousal rape are difficult to prosecute and defend as the evidence and testimonies typically change frequently throughout the course of the trial. The spouses influence each other with promises to change their behavior resulting in unclear path of persuasion. The charges are often dropped in the middle of negotiations due to reconciliation efforts between the parties involved. However, those who are determined to pursue should be aware of the reasons why the rape has occurred and present the facts in the court.

Drug Use – Spousal rape often occurs when a person is under the influence of recreational drugs, medication or alcohol. Both the perpetrator and the target may be under the influence and may not remember the course of events. These cases are the most difficult to prove and often result in court dismissals unless there are witnesses and strong evidence of the rape.

Sodomy Acts – Sodomy is frequently performed when a spouse is mentally challenged and can only complete the sexual act orally or through the anal intercourse. The event frequently includes animals and artificial devices. This type of copulation is often engaged between homosexual individuals and may not be reported to the authorities due to the embarrassment factor.

Spousal Duties – Many couples have their roles divided within the institution of marriage and are expected to comply. One of these roles may include one spouse feeling entitled to performing sexual acts at any time without the consent of the other spouse. In many cases, heterosexual couples face this dilemma where the woman is requested to comply with her husband’s desire for sex.

Religious Inclinations – Most religions have strict rules in regards to marital copulations. Two different religion beliefs may clash with each other. It is important to discuss these differences before committing to marriage as any sexual act may be portrayed as a sexual abuse while the other party may view it as a spouse’s prerogative.

Fear of Being Hurt – Many spouses let sexual abuse happen because they’re afraid of being hurt or killed. If there is a history of domestic abuse, the partner will coil and meet the abuser’s desires. The undesired sex becomes a part of daily living and many partners cope with it to avoid physical and emotional pain.

Marital rape should be always reported to the authorities. Worldwide reclassification of spousal abuse has been in effect for many decades and abusive sexual acts are no longer valid regardless of religion, status and race. Seasoned team of attorneys must be engaged to protect the rights of the offenders and the victims of rape alike. All occurrences should be recorded by medical providers and police officials to ensure proper conviction of the abusing spouse.

For more information about Marital rape, visit

AZ bill: Time limit null for suits over sex abuse of child

State lawmakers voted Monday to give childhood victims of sexual abuse an entire lifetime to sue those who assaulted them.

Without dissent, the Senate Judiciary Committee approved a measure to repeal the existing laws that require civil suits to be filed within two years of a victim’s turning 18. For incidents that take place in the future, there will be no statute of limitations.

SB 1292 also opens a window for those who were abused in the past 35 years, giving them one year from the time the law takes effect to file suit, even if the time limit had previously run out.

But legislators agreed to extend the time allowed to file a suit only for cases based on a defendant’s “direct or intentional conduct.”

Sen. Amanda Aguirre, D-Yuma, who wrote the legislation, said it would give sex-abuse victims added time to go after both the perpetrator and anyone who knew of the abuse.

But she said it would leave the current time limits in place for lawsuits against churches or school districts for simply being negligent in supervising their employees. And she said it also would bar late-filed lawsuits, even if a victim could show that an organization or even a specific person had suspicions someone was a molester but failed to act.

The measure now goes to the full Senate.

Ron Johnson, who lobbies on behalf of the state’s three Catholic bishops, acknowledged that he has been working to limit the measure from its original scope. But Johnson said any limit is not to shield those responsible. Rather, he said, it would ensure that businesses, churches and schools would be able to buy insurance. Without some limit on litigation, Johnson said, no coverage would be available.

He isn’t the only one pushing for limits. Jack LaSota, who lobbies on behalf of the Arizona School Risk Retention Trust, said school districts that buy liability insurance through his organization want some assurances that the law won’t be changed so much that it would open the door to lawsuits filed after decades solely because someone who turned out to be a molester happened to be employed years ago.

Monday’s vote followed a plea from Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeau, who told lawmakers last week that he was the victim of abuse as a child. It’s important to provide a civil alternative to those who were abused but could not get justice in criminal proceedings, he said.

But Yuma County Attorney Jon Smith told legislators that it’s often difficult to get a conviction in these cases, unless there is a witness other than the victim, or the assailant confesses. Civil suits have a lower standard of proof, he said.

Jeff Dion, acting executive director of the National Center for Victims of Crime, said: “Pedophiles don’t retire. Even when the victim waits 30 years to disclose the abuse, if the perpetrator is still alive, we find them at 70 or 80 years old, in walkers and wheelchairs, continuing to molest kids.”

Howard Fischer Capitol Media Services
February 23, 2010
Source: Arizona Daily Star

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