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Columbia, MO Sexual Assault Lawyer

Columbia, MO Sexual Assault Lawyer

If you are looking to learn about your legal rights and options after having been sexually assaulted or abused, Thomas Law Offices is here for you. We understand these cases are difficult legally and personally, which is why you will benefit from working with a Columbia, MO sexual assault lawyer.

Sex crimes in Missouri are punishable by law, but victims can face challenges in proving fault or guilt. When you work with our attorneys, they will help you build a strong claim that upholds your rights and gets you the financial recovery you need to begin moving forward and taking control of your life.

Rape and Sexual Assault Crime Definitions in Missouri

Missouri law separates sex crimes into different categories with different penalties that apply to criminal cases. In the event you are looking to pursue a civil case against someone for assault, your lawyer will work to define the sex crime you need to prove.

  • First Degree Rape. A person commits first-degree rape if they have sexual intercourse with another person who is incapacitated, incapable of consent, or is forced via compulsion. The perpetrator could face five years to life in prison if convicted.
  • Statutory Rape in the First Degree. A person commits statutory rape in the first degree if they have intercourse with another person who is less than 14 years of age. Punishment if convicted is five years to life.
  • Second Degree Rape. Second-degree rape happens if a person has sexual intercourse with another person knowing they do not have consent. The maximum imprisonment and fine for this crime is seven years and $10,000.
  • Statutory Rape in the Second Degree. Statutory rape in the second degree happens if a person is 21 years of age or older and has sexual intercourse with someone under 17. There is a maximum prison sentence of seven years and $10,000 in fines.
  • Sodomy. This involves a person having deviate sexual intercourse without consent. If found guilty of a first-degree felony, the perpetrator could face five years to life in prison. A second-degree felony warrants up to seven years in prison and $10,000 in fines.
  • Child Molestation. A person commits child molestation if they subject a person who is less than 14 to sexual contact, and the offense is an aggravated sexual offense. Imprisonment is possible for ten years and not to exceed 30 years.
  • Sexual Misconduct Involving a Child. Sexual misconduct of a minor involves exposing genitals to someone under 15 and knowingly coercing someone under 15 to expose their genitals. Punishment involves up to seven years in prison with fines up to $10,000.
  • Sexual Contact With a Student. Any time a teacher is found guilty of having sexual contact with a student, they could face up to four years in prison and $10,000 in fines.
  • Sexual Misconduct. Sexual misconduct is when an adult exposes themselves to another adult without consent or tries to coerce engaging in sexual conduct. The maximum prison sentence is one year with up to $2,000 in fines.
  • Statutory Sodomy. Statutory sodomy is committed anytime a person has sexual intercourse with a person who is less than 14 years old. Punishments include five years to life in prison.
  • Sexual Abuse. A person commits sexual abuse when they subject another person to sexual contact when they are incapacitated. The perpetrator could face three to ten years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines.

We recognize that defining the types of sex crimes in Missouri does not necessarily help you recover from what you’ve been through, but determining what you’ve experienced is an important part of your claim.

Criminal vs. Civil Cases for Sexual Assault

If you’re considering taking legal action for a sexual assault incident, it’s important to understand your rights and legal options. Sexual assault is a crime across the United States, which means the local prosecutor can bring charges against the alleged attacker with a criminal case. If you are the victim of that person, you do not have to participate in the criminal justice process, but you can. Doing so may increase the chances of getting a conviction.

As a sexual assault victim, you have the right to pursue your own claim in civil court. You can sue the attacker for their wrongdoing and seek restitution for your losses—which can help manage any related medical expenses, lost wages, etc. Depending on where and when the attack happened, you may also be able to file a civil claim against an entity like a school, store, hotel, or hospital.

If you choose to file a sexual assault claim in civil court, you will have more control over the proceedings, and you’ll be able to hold multiple parties accountable at once. If you want to get a claim started, our Missouri sex crime attorneys can help.

Thomas Law Offices is here for victims of sexual assault. Our attorneys are prepared to help you overcome and move forward. To learn how to hold a negligent person or entity responsible for your sexual assault, contact us today.
Call us at 502.473.6540 or fill out this form.

Resources for Victims of Sexual Assault in Columbia

In Columbia, there are a number of places you can go to seek counsel and guidance when dealing with the aftermath of an assault. A few of the resources include the following:

No matter what you’re going through, the resources above can help you after a sexual assault incident, and our attorneys are standing by, ready to fight for you.

Contact Thomas Law Offices

At Thomas Law Offices, we believe victims of sexual assault deserve to have their voices heard. If you or someone you know is considering taking legal action, a Columbia, MO sexual assault lawyer can help. We understand how challenging it can be to take a stand for yourself. We’ll be by you, supporting you, every step of the way.

The sooner you get in touch with us, the better we will be able to serve you. Contact us today for more information.

Free Case Evaluation

At Thomas Law Offices, our personal injury attorneys recognize that our potential clients are likely going through some of the most difficult times of their lives. We don't want you to have to worry about paying out of pocket for legal advice when you're just starting to learn your legal rights and options. That's why we provide free case evaluations. We'll offer our expert advice about your potential case and walk you through how we can help you.

Call us or fill out the form below to tell us about your potential case and a personal injury lawyer will get back to you as quickly as possible.

Meet Our Founder

Tad Thomas - Trial Lawyer

Tad Thomas

Managing Partner

Tad Thomas has dedicated his practice to representing plaintiffs in various types of civil litigation, including personal injury, business litigation, class actions, and multi-district litigation.

After graduating with his law degree in 2000 from Salmon P. Chase College of Law at Northern Kentucky University, Mr. Thomas immediately opened his own private practice and began representing injury victims.

In 2011, Thomas Law Offices was established in Louisville, Kentucky. Over the past decade, Mr. Thomas has expanded his firm and now has offices in three additional locations: Cincinnati, Ohio, Columbia, Missouri, and Chicago, Illinois. He is also a frequent lecturer on topics like trial skills and ethics and technology.

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Tad Thomas on The National Crime Victim Bar Association
National Civil Justice Institute - Trustee
Tad Thomas on Lawyer Minds
Tad Thomas on American Association for Justice
Southern Trial Lawyers Association
Illinois Trial Lawyers Association
Ohio Association for Justice
Kentucky Justice Association
Fellows of the Litigation Counsel of America
Martindale Hubbell Preeminent
2021 Public Justice Member
AAJ Masters of Trial Law: Champion