Information on the crime of sodomy by force or fear is located at California penal code section 286(c)(2)(A). This summary covers the law, sentence, punishments, and common defenses related to penal code 286(c)(2)(A). For further information, contact our sex crimes criminal defense attorneys.
PC 286(c)(2)(A) Law
Per PC 286(c)(2)(A), Any person who commits an act of sodomy when the act is accomplished against the victim’s will by means of force, violence, duress, menace, or fear of immediate and unlawful bodily injury on the victim or another person is guilty of sodomy by force or fear, a felony (PC 286(c)(2)(A) Abbrev.).
Sodomy Defined: Sodomy is “sexual conduct consisting of contact between the penis of one person and the anus of another person. Any sexual penetration, however slight, is sufficient to complete the crime of sodomy (PC 286(a)).
Note: Sodomy by force or fear is commonly referred to as “unlawful anal intercourse,” “anal sex by force,” or “anal rape.”
PC 286(c)(2)(A) Punishment
Prison Sentence: PC 286(c)(2)(A) is classified as a felony. If found guilty of sodomy by force or fear, the defendant may face up to three (3), six (6), or eight (8) years in a California state prison, depending on the circumstances and facts of the case.
Triad Prison Sentencing: After conviction for sodomy by force or fear, the sentencing judge has only three options for the length of prison sentenced to be ordered: three (3), six (6), or eight (8) years.
When deciding which prison sentence length best meets the interest of justice, the judge will consider any mitigating or aggravating factors presented by the district attorney and the defendant’s criminal defense attorney. If no factors are presented, the judge will sentence the defendant to the middle term prison sentence of six (6) years (i.e., “presumptive” prison sentence).
PC 1170(h) Sentencing: Incarceration related to a PC 286(c)(2)(A) violation must be served in a California state prison, as opposed to a local county jail. Additionally, no part of a prison sentence related to the crime of sodomy by force or fear may be “split” or “suspended.”
Reduced Good Conduct Credits: A prison sentence related to a PC 286(c)(2)(A) conviction may not be reduced by more than fifteen percent (15%) [PC 2933.1]. For example, if the defendant is sentence to six (6) years of prison after a PC 286(c)(2)(A) conviction, then the defendant must serve at least sixty-two months of prison even if he conducts himself with good behavior while in prison (i.e., +/- 85% of six (6) years).
Consecutive Sentencing: Each conviction of PC 286(c)(2)(A) requires a full and complete prison sentence, which runs consecutive to any prison sentence for any other criminal charge (PC 667.61).
Example: John is convicted of two (2) counts of PC 286(c)(2)(A). The judge sentences John to six (6) years of prison for each count. Result: John must serve twelve (12) years of prison because his prison sentence for count two (2) does not even start until he finishes his prison sentence for count one (1).
Probation Sentence: A probation sentence after a conviction for sodomy by force or fear in not allowed. This means that if the defendant is convicted of PC 286(c)(2)(A), he must serve at least three (3) years of prison for each count (low-term prison sentence).
Sex Offender Registration: Sex offender registration is mandatory after a conviction for PC 286(c)(2)(A) [PC 290]. The sex offender registration period is for life (Tier 3). For more information, see Sex Offender Registration Requirements & SB 384 – Tier System for CA Sex Offender Registrants.
Moral Turpitude: Sodomy by force or fear is considered a crime involving moral turpitude, or CIMT. CIMT convictions result in deportation for non-US citizens, possible professional license revocation (i.e., doctor, lawyer, therapist, dentist, nurse, etc.), and discharge from military service.
Three Strikes Sentencing: PC 286(c)(2)(A) convictions are classified as “strike” convictions per California’s Three Strikes Sentencing Law (PC 667.5 & 1192.7). Subsequent convictions of “strike” convictions can double a prison sentence or lead to life in prison, depending on the circumstances of the defendant’s prior “strike” conviction(s) status.
Additional Penalties: Additional penalties after a conviction for sodomy by force or fear include restitution to victim, criminal protective orders against defendant, civil lawsuits, living and travel restrictions, loss of firearm are rights, loss of family law rights (child visitation, child custody, adoption, etc.), and more.
PC 286(c)(2)(A) Common Defenses
Common defenses to a criminal charge of sodomy by force or fear include consent to sodomy, insufficient evidence to prove anal intercourse occurred, impeachment of scientific evidence (DNA, seminal fluid, serology, fingerprints, etc.), defendant’s coerced confession, illegal search and seizure, un-Mirandized confession, impeachment of victim or witness statement (i.e., motive to fabricate, alibi defense, lack of consistent statements, etc.), and more.
Note: Evidence that a person’s requested that the defendant use a condom during anal sex, or that the defendant and the victim were in a dating relationship at the time of anal sex, is not, by itself, sufficient to prove the victim validly consented to anal intercourse.
Statute of Limitations: The statute of limitations is a time limit in which the district attorney must bring criminal charges against the defendant. If the statute of limitations has passed, the district attorney is barred from prosecuting the defendant. The statute of limitations in PC 286(c)(2)(A) is not commonly used because the limitations period is very long in most sodomy by force or fear cases. Nevertheless, the defense can apply if certain conditions are met. For more information, see Statute of Limitations for Sodomy Offenses.
Post-Conviction Options: Post conviction options are very limited in PC 286(c)(2)(A) cases. With that said, post-conviction options include appeal the criminal conviction, petition the court for a writ of habeas corpus, withdraw a guilty plea, or petition the Governor of California for a Governor’s pardon.
For more information on the crime of sodomy by force or fear, or California penal code section 286(c)(2)(A), contact our sex crimes criminal defense attorneys today for a free consultation. Our aggressive and passionate criminal defense attorneys have successfully handled hundreds of felony and misdemeanor sex crimes in the I.E.
Our team of award-winning criminal defense trial attorneys represent clients in any of the following sex crimes: Lewd and Lascivious Act Upon a Child Under Fourteen (PC 288(a)), Sexual Battery (PC 243.4), Possession of Child Pornography (PC 311), Soliciting Prostitution (PC 647(b)(2)), Indecent Exposure (PC 314.1), Annoy or Molest a Minor (PC 647.6), Child Molestation (PC 288), Statutory Rape (PC 261.5), Sexual Penetration (PC 289), Oral Copulation (PC 287), Revenge Porn (PC 647(j)(4)), and more. Call today!