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Oakland man charged with sex crimes

A 26-year-old Oakland man is accused of sex crimes stemming from alleged intercourse with a 14-year-old relative in Napa. The man allegedly impregnated the girl, who ended up reporting the pregnancy and the birth of a child to social services.

Last month, the state added to the August charges the special charges of committing a lewd act on a child and causing great bodily injury. The suspect has pleaded not guilty to all the charges. The judge ordered him on Oct. 4 to stand trial after a preliminary hearing scheduled for Nov. 1. He remains free pending the trial.

Sex crimes typically involve some aspect of force. In the case of a minor, force is implied even if the minor consented to the sexual act. By definition of the law, a minor cannot consent to sexual activity until he or she reaches the age of consent -- 18 in California -- so any type of sex act with a child under that age could result in criminal charges. However, it is important to remember that each case is unique and can lead to a variety of conclusions.

Unfortunately, some people end up in a situation like this unknowingly, but even if the action was consensual, it can lead to criminal charges. An attorney can explain the possible consequences of a sex-crime charge and assist the accused in finding the best strategy for defense.

Source: Napa Valley Register, "Oakland man to stand trial after being charged with a sex crime in Napa," Kerana Todorov, Oct. 10, 2012

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