Controversy is brewing in the state of Oklahoma, and it’s directed towards a law that prohibits sexual activity between teachers and students. An Oklahoma City attorney and his client, Tyrone Nash, who was arrested in 2011 for second-degree rape and oral sodomy, are challenging the constitutionality of an Oklahoma law that makes it unlawful for …
Controversy is brewing in the state of Oklahoma, and it’s directed towards a law that prohibits sexual activity between teachers and students. An Oklahoma City attorney and his client, Tyrone Nash, who was arrested in 2011 for second-degree rape and oral sodomy, are challenging the constitutionality of an Oklahoma law that makes it unlawful for teachers and students to have sex with one another. The problem though, lies in the fact that Nash was a high school teacher at the time the reported sexual activity took place, and the alleged victim was a 16-year-old student in the same school, which makes it illegal for the two individuals to engage in intercourse. If you are facing charges for rape or sodomy in Oklahoma, contact our qualified criminal defense lawyers at Oklahoma Legal Center to discuss your legal options. With the help of our skilled criminal defense team, you can build a strong defense in your case and ensure that your legal rights are protected throughout the process.
Oklahoma Rape Laws and Age of Consent
According to Oklahoma sex crimes laws, engaging in sexual intercourse with a person who did not consent to the act or who is legally unable to give consent can result in a charge of rape in the second degree. Oklahoma statutes consider the following individuals as unable to consent to sexual intercourse:
- Those under the age of 16; or
- Those whose mental illness or unsoundness of mind renders them unable to give consent; or
- Those who are under the supervision of a state or local agency and have intercourse with an employee or authority of that agency This component of the law includes sex acts between students and teachers, even if the student is 16-20 years old.
In Tyrone Nash’s case, even though the 16-year-old student consented to the act and the age of consent in Oklahoma is 16, the exception Oklahoma lawmakers have established for relationships between teachers and students can land a teacher in jail and on the National Sex Offender Registry.
Penalties Associated With Oklahoma Rape and Sodomy Charges
Nash’s attorney claims the teacher-student component of Oklahoma rape laws is unconstitutional, based on the fact that Nash was not the girl’s teacher at the time of the reported sex. He says the legislation needs to be changed to deal only with sex acts between teachers and those students over whom that they have direct power and authority. Nash’s case is set to go to trial in October 2012, but the defense is expecting a ruling on its motion by the Oklahoma County District judge before the trial begins. If Nash is convicted of the Oklahoma second-degree rape charges, he could face one to fifteen years in prison, and oral sodomy charges in Oklahoma carry a prison sentence of up to ten years. In addition, these sex crime charges will likely result in Nash being required to register as a sex offender with the state, which would restrict his access to schools, churches, libraries and parks.
Contact Our Criminal Defense Attorneys Today
A rape and oral sodomy conviction in Oklahoma can result not only in a significant prison sentence, but may also require the offender to register with the National Sex Offender Registry, which can have a long-lasting impact on the accused’s freedoms and personal and professional reputation. If you have been accused of first- or second-degree rape or oral sodomy in Oklahoma, your first course of action should be to contact our knowledgeable criminal defense attorneys at Oklahoma Legal Center. Our team of criminal defense lawyers have years of experience defending the rights of Oklahomans facing sex crime charges, and can significantly improve your chances of a favorable outcome in your case. With our skilled criminal defense attorneys on your side, you can prevent any violation of your civil rights and fight to preserve your personal freedoms.