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Are there different kinds of sexual assault?

Sexual assault comes in a number of forms, and if you've been accused, you'll need to know exactly what it is the alleged victim says you've done. For example, rape is a form of sexual assault, and it's when a person is penetrated by a body part or object without his or her consent. However, not all sexual assaults are rape, so you shouldn't assume that's what the accusation is if you face sexual assault charges.

Another thing to understand is the term, "force." This term seems like it would mean physically forcing something on someone, but that's not the case. Force can also mean to coerce or manipulate a person into complying with an act he or she doesn't want to participate in.

There are three kinds of sexual assaults that fall under the term "stranger rape." This is when the victim doesn't know the perpetrator. Here's an example of how you might be involved when you didn't actually do anything. If a victim doesn't see the person assaulting him or her or alleges that you were the person involved when you're seen out in public, it might be a case of a mistaken identity. You might not even know this person, but because stranger rape is a consideration, the police must act. Three kinds of stranger rape, contact sexual assault, home invasion sexual assault and blitz sexual assault, fall into this category and could be alleged against you.

Your job is to defend yourself. If you have an alibi for the night that the assault allegedly happened or information on how it couldn't have been an assault, then this can help your case.

Source: RAINN, "Sexual Assault," accessed Sep. 07, 2016

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