ORLANDO, FL (November 4, 2019) – WFTV.com writes that police located and arrested one of two men wanted for alleged sex crimes in Orlando. The two suspects were accused of unrelated sex crimes in the Orlando area. The suspect who was arrested turned himself in earlier this week in relation to a crime that he is accused of committing in Lake Eola Heights. The attack allegedly happened on Cathcart Avenue when a woman returning from walking her dog said that the suspect attacked her and attempted to force her into her apartment. The man fled the scene when a neighbor came out to investigate the commotion.
Another suspect is still at large after police say he is accused of raping a woman near East Jefferson Street on October 26, 2019. The attack reportedly occurred outside of a home. Police released the name of the man wanted in connection to the second attack, but have not located him at this time.
The suspect who is in custody is facing several criminal charges including, burglary with battery and kidnapping.
Florida Sexual Battery Laws
In Florida, the crime of sexual battery, which is commonly known as rape, is aggressively prosecuted. The crime occurs when one person has contact with another person’s mouth, anus, or vagina, with their sexual organ or an object, without having consent. The penalties for such a crime are steep, and because these cases often rely largely on competing witness testimony, they are difficult and complicated to handle.
The penalty of sexual battery carries a possible sentence of fifteen years in prison, a $10,000 fine, and fifteen years of sex offender probation. Sexual battery is a second-degree felony in Florida, but there are certain factors that can increase the classification and related penalties.
Aggravating circumstances to this crime include a victim who is physically helpless, a victim who is coerced by threats of physical violence to the victim or another person that the victim reasonably believes the perpetrator is capable of carrying out, the victim is drugged without their consent, the victim is vulnerable because of a mental or physical defect or incapacitation, or if the victim is a law enforcement officer or another person in a position of authority or an agent of the government.
Age also factors into the classification and punishment. Sexual battery of a child under twelve years old when committed by a person eighteen-year-old or older becomes a Capital Felony, which comes with mandatory sentencing of life in prison without parole.
When a deadly weapon is used in the commission of sexual battery, or when the crime is likely to cause serious injury to the victim, the crime is upgraded to a Life Felony, which can be punished by life imprisonment and sex offender probation for life.
Individuals accused of sexual battery can defend by claiming the interaction was consensual, or by claiming that the allegations made against them were false.