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Rape Virginia Attempt Lesser Offense Lawyers Alexandria City

Rape Virginia Attempt Lesser Offense Lawyers Alexandria City

Thomson v. Commonwealth
Facts:

Defendant appealed from a judgment of the Corporation Court of the City of Alexandria (Virginia), which convicted him of attempted rape and sentenced him to confinement in the penitentiary for a period of 10 years.

Rape Virginia Attempt Lesser Offense Lawyers Alexandria City

Rape Virginia Attempt Lesser Offense Lawyers Alexandria City

Issue:
  • Whether the trial court improperly failed to charge the jury that the accused might be found guilty of a lesser offense than attempted rape?
Discussion:

Defendant assigned as error the failure of the trial court to charge the jury that defendant might have been found guilty of a lesser offense. The court reversed the judgment and remanded the case. The court determined that defendant having been indicted for attempted rape under Va. Code § 4767, as amended by 1930 Acts ch. 32, the erroneous instruction to the jury that if they found him guilty they should have done so under § 4767 and Va. Code § 4414, as amended by 1924 Acts ch. 443, which created the crime of rape, may have tended to mislead the jury in arriving at its verdict because the instruction went beyond the charge in the indictment. The court explained that the jury should have been instructed that they could have found defendant guilty of a lesser offense than an attempted rape. The court noted that in the light of defendant’s denial and his contradiction of the testimony of the prosecutrix, the jury would have been reasonably justified in accepting a portion of her testimony and rejecting the rest of it. The court concluded that the jury could have concluded that defendant went no farther than to detain the prosecutrix by force and place his hand over her mouth. The court set aside the verdict. The court reversed the judgment of the trial court. The court remanded the case for a new trial.

The SRIS Law Group Virginia lawyers will do their best to help you with your sex crime case. Contact a Virginia lawyer from our firm to discuss your sex crime case. A Virginia lawyer from our firm will talk with you about your sex crime case in Virginia and advise you about your options. You can count on a lawyer from our firm to try their best to help you obtain the best result possible based on the facts of your case.

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Article written by A Sris

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Disclaimer:

These summaries are provided by the SRIS Law Group. They represent the firm’s unofficial views of the Justices’ opinions. The original opinions should be consulted for their authoritative content.

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