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Marital Rape

Rape is a sexual assault and is a crime in Texas.  It does not matter whether you are married to the rapist.  Marriage is not a license to engage in sexual acts without the consent of the spouse.  It is not the wife’s “duty” to have sex with her husband if she does not want to. No means no.  See Texas Penal Code §22.011.

Marital rape or spousal rape is non-consensual intercourse where the perpetrator is the victim’s spouse. It is a form of partner rape, domestic violence, and sexual abuse. In many countries, outside of the U.S., spousal rape is still deemed to be legal and the perpetrator cannot be prosecuted for it. However, many countries, by international agreement, have made it a criminal offense.  In all 50 states, marital rape is a crime.  Marriage is not a defense. Unfortunately, ignorance of the law has allowed this crime to go unreported.

Under Texas law, spousal rape is a felony of the second degree and can result in a minimum of two years in prison and a maximum of twenty years along with a fine of up to $10,000.00.

In addition to the criminal penalty, it is family violence and will certainly subject the perpetrator to a protective order.

  • What is Rape? Texas Penal Code §22.011(a)

(a) A person commits an offense if the person:

(1) intentionally or knowingly:

(A) causes the penetration of the anus or sexual organ of another person by any means, without that person’s consent;

(B) causes the penetration of the mouth of another person by the sexual organ of the actor, without that person’s consent; or

(C) causes the sexual organ of another person, without that person’s consent, to contact or penetrate the mouth, anus, or sexual organ of another person, including the actor; or

(2) intentionally or knowingly:

(A) causes the penetration of the anus or sexual organ of a child by any means;

(B) causes the penetration of the mouth of a child by the sexual organ of the actor;

(C) causes the sexual organ of a child to contact or penetrate the mouth, anus, or sexual organ of another person, including the actor;

(D) causes the anus of a child to contact the mouth, anus, or sexual organ of another person, including the actor; or

(E) causes the mouth of a child to contact the anus or sexual organ of another person, including the actor.

  • What is “Without Consent?” Texas Penal Code §22.011(b)

(b) A sexual assault under Subsection (a)(1) is without the consent of the other person if:

(1) the actor compels the other person to submit or participate by the use of physical force or violence;

(2) the actor compels the other person to submit or participate by threatening to use force or violence against the other person, and the other person believes that the actor has the present ability to execute the threat;

(3) the other person has not consented and the actor knows the other person is unconscious or physically unable to resist;

(4) the actor knows that as a result of mental disease or defect the other person is at the time of the sexual assault incapable either of appraising the nature of the act or of resisting it;

(5) the other person has not consented and the actor knows the other person is unaware that the sexual assault is occurring;

(6) the actor has intentionally impaired the other person’s power to appraise or control the other person’s conduct by administering any substance without the other person’s knowledge;

(7) the actor compels the other person to submit or participate by threatening to use force or violence against any person, and the other person believes that the actor has the ability to execute the threat;

(8) the actor is a public servant who coerces the other person to submit or participate;

(9) the actor is a mental health services provider or a health care services provider who causes the other person, who is a patient or former patient of the actor, to submit or participate by exploiting the other person’s emotional dependency on the actor;

(10) the actor is a clergyman who causes the other person to submit or participate by exploiting the other person’s emotional dependency on the clergyman in the clergyman’s professional character as spiritual adviser; or

(11) the actor is an employee of a facility where the other person is a resident, unless the employee and resident are formally or informally married to each other under Chapter 2, Family Code.