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People v. Evans

    Brief Fact Summary. Defendant posed as a psychologist and lured Victim to an apartment in order to have sexual intercourse. Victim stated that it was without her consent.

    Synopsis of Rule of Law. Fraud and seduction if not accompanied by force or use of force is not sufficient under the statute to support a charge of rape.

    Facts. Defendant was a 37 year-old bachelor. The Defendant posed as a psychologist doing a magazine article, using a fake name to induce Victim to accompany him. Defendant told Victim “I could kill you. I could rape you,” but Defendant did not strike or touch the victim in any way. Victim alleges that she was frightened and had intercourse with Defendant against her will but did not resist.

    Issue. Whether sexual intercourse by means of fraud and deception constitute rape under state statute?

    Held. Defendant is not guilty of rape in the first degree. Although his acts were reprehensible, and fraudulent, he did not forcibly compel the victim to have sexual intercourse.
    The extent of the resistance of the victim is governed by the circumstances of the case, and whether resistance is useless is a question for the trier of fact.

    When words or a statement can be interpreted two different ways, the court cannot find beyond a reasonable doubt that the guilt of the Defendant has been established.


    Discussion. The Court discussed the difference between sexual intercourse procured by force and sexual intercourse procured by seduction. The Court noted that there are not laws against seduction in New York, although other jurisdictions have such statutes. Although Defendant used words of force, the court found that the circumstances in which the sexual intercourse took place could lend itself to two conflicting interpretations. Because of that, the Court could not find beyond a reasonable doubt that Defendant had used force or the threat of force to induce the victim to have sexual intercourse.


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