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Word Count: 1,750
Rape is legally defined and divided into two separate categories There is forcible and statutory rape both of which are considered felonies in the United States An alleged offender once arrested will face charges in the criminal court Within the American legal system there are two distinct arenas of law criminal and civil A victim of a crime will generally be a witness for the state in the prosecution of the alleged offender Within the civil arena the victim of a crime can bring forth a civil action suit against the alleged perpetrator regardless of the verdict passed down in criminal court in pursuit of monetary restitution and compensation Beyond criminal prosecution a victim can obtain legal counsel and sue the perpetrator for personal injury in Civil Court If the verdict is in the favor of the victim the defendant is ordered to pay money for the damages caused as a result of their crime The realm of damages can include pain and suffering medical expenses loss of income and punitive damages Punitive damages are not design to further compensate the victim but to further punish the offender At the heart of a civil suit in relation to a rape or other cases of violent crime is the questions of liability and collectability The two factors that are most important in a case are the victims attorneys ability to construct an insightful presentation of the facts that may very well encourage a judge or jury to find in favor of the plaintiff The second factor of a case is the victim the role of the victim is to provide their attorney with as much relevant information as is needed to assist in obtaining a favorable judgement This is a drastic change from the realm of the criminal court where the prosecution holds the burden of proof The responsibility is on the prosecution to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that the alleged is
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