Table of Contents
- Main Defenses to a Sexual Assault Accusation
- Is Sexual Assault an Ethical Issue?
- The Ethical Duties of a Defense Attorney to His or Her Client
- Examples of Unethical Attorney Behavior
Main Defenses to a Sexual Assault Accusation
When facing charges of sexual assault, defendants usually rely on one or more of three main defenses. The first is one of consent; claiming that the accuser consented to the sexual contact. The second defense is mistaken identity, where the defendant is claiming that the accuser is wrong about who committed the alleged sexual assault. The third defense is alibi, in which the defendant claims to have been somewhere else at the time of the alleged assault, making it impossible for the defendant to have committed it.
Is Sexual Assault an Ethical Issue?
Defending someone accused of sexual assault is often thought of as an ethical dilemma. This is because, while defense attorneys have a duty to zealously represent their clients, they must also maintain a duty to uphold the law and justice. This means that it is the duty of defense attorneys to uphold the legal system as well as the ethical standards of their profession. Because of this, defending someone accused of sexual assault can be an ethical quandary, as it involves both protecting the rights of the accused as well as ensuring that justice is served.
The Ethical Duties of a Defense Attorney to His or Her Client
The ethical duties of a defense attorney to his or her client include providing competent legal representation, remaining loyal to the client in all matters, maintaining the confidentiality of any client communications, and protecting the client’s rights. Additionally, a defense attorney is responsible for truthfully informing the client of the legal ramifications of any action he or she might take. The attorney must also ensure that his or her client is aware of any potential defenses that may be available to him or her.
Examples of Unethical Attorney Behavior
Unethical attorney behavior includes any type of behavior that is in violation of the rules of professional conduct. Examples of unethical behavior include misrepresenting facts, inadequately researching the facts of the case, or failing to follow court orders. Additionally, attorneys can be found in violation of ethical standards if they fail to properly advise their clients on the law or fail to provide competent representation. Furthermore, attorneys can also be held accountable for any actions of their staff or associates that violate ethical standards.