Earlier this month, an Arlington man was identified and arrested for sexual assault. On June 15, 2020, local news outlets announced that Jessie Dewayne Ray had been arrested and charged with aggravated sexual assault.

According to reports, the Arlington Police Department and Arlington Sex Crimes detectives had been searching for Ray since last year. On September 21, 2019, police were called to Crystal Canyon Park after a woman said she was assaulted by a man. The victim stated that while she was at the park, a man approached her from behind and displayed a handgun before sexually assaulting her. At the time, the police department publicly released a sketch of what the perpetrator may look like, but the offender’s identity has now been confirmed.

Authorities say they were initially performing a drug investigation when they were pulled aside to investigate Ray after finding a video of the offender recording himself committing the sexual assault. In addition to being charged with aggravated sexual assault, Ray has also been charged with four drug-related crimes as well as one count of possession of a firearm by a felon.

Arlington’s Crystal Canyon Natural Area should be a place of oasis for Tarrant County citizens, but unfortunately, this is where this heinous, violent crime took place. Countless Arlington residents use public parks, walkways, and hiking trails on a daily basis. When they’re unable to trust these public areas to be safe, it diminishes the overall quality of our community. Individuals who are capable of committing violent crimes must be punished and removed from society, and we are happy to know that authorities were able to apprehend Jessie Ray before he was able to victimize anyone else. Next, we’ll look at some of the potential penalties the offender will face.

Texas Aggravated Sexual Assault Definition and Penalties

Aggravated sexual assault is an extremely serious crime that will bring about some serious consequences. In the state of Texas, aggravated sexual assault is defined under the Texas Penal Code § 22.021. According to this statute, an individual is guilty of this crime when they do any of the following:

  • Cause the sexual organ of an individual to contact or penetrate the mouth, anus, or sexual organ of another person without the individual’s consent
  • Cause the penetration of the mouth of another individual by the sexual organ of the alleged offender without consent
  • Cause the penetration of the anus or sexual organ of another individual by any means without consent

To be charged with aggravated sexual assault, the crime must also contain one of these factors:

  • The alleged victim is an elderly and/or disabled person
  • The alleged offender caused serious bodily injury during the offense or attempted to cause serious harm or death
  • The alleged victim is under 14 years old
  • The alleged offender uses acts or words that place the victim under fear of imminent death, serious bodily injury, or kidnapping
  • The alleged offender used substances such as ketamine, gamma hydroxybutyrate, or flunitrazepam to subdue the victim and facilitate the commission of this crime
  • The alleged offender uses or exhibits a deadly weapon during the criminal episode

Aggravated sexual assault is a felony offense. If an individual is convicted of this crime, they can face a first-degree felony classification that carries a maximum sentence of life in prison, in addition to a mandatory fine that could be as expensive as $10,000. The minimum prison sentence for this crime is 5 years, but it could be increased to 25 years if the victim is younger than 14 years of age at the time of the offense.

Find A Tarrant County Defense Attorney for Sexual Assault| Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy

Any sort of sexual assault or sex crime should be taken seriously. These crimes violate the boundaries and safety of other humans, and individuals who seek to commit sex-related crimes are threats to our societies. It is important to also remember that aggravated sexual assault is a crime that takes this a step further. Using a deadly weapon to pressure a victim into bending their will and giving in to whatever commands are given to them is an extremely traumatic moment to live through. Many victims report years upon years of professional mental health counseling before they find themselves feeling like “themselves” again.

Aggravated sexual assault crimes are extremely serious, and they should always be treated as such. If you are an individual who has been charged with or accused of these types of crimes, the Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy is here to help. Led by criminal defense attorney Richard C. McConathy, our law firm specializes in criminal defense. We understand that not every charge should necessarily result in a conviction, and if you are an individual who is attempting to combat your charges, our attorneys are prepared to represent you in a court of law. For more information on how we can be of assistance, contact our office at (817) 422-5350 to schedule your consultation.