Victim and D were both college sophomores. Victim drank a martini and went to her boyfriend's dorm room.
Her boyfriend was not there, so she went to find his roommate. She saw a boy sleeping on a bed and thought it was the roommate. She lifted the pillow from his head and found D instead.
Victim and D talked on the floor for a while. D locked the door but only so people on the outside could not get in. D began kissing and fondling victim; she told him no. D put her down on the bed and penetrated her. She began moaning no's. After 30 seconds, D pulled out and yanked it on her stomach.
Victim raced downstairs and found her boyfriend who called the police.
Trial court found D guilty of rape and indecent assault.
PA Superior Court reversed the rape charge and remanded for a new trial on the indecent assault charge.
What precise degree of actual physical force necessary to prove "forcible compulsion"?
The determination of whether there is sufficient evidence to demonstrate forcible compulsion is a determination that will be made in each case based upon the totality of the circumstances that have been presented. Some factors to consider include…
The respective ages of the victim and accused
The respective mental and physical conditions
The atmosphere and physical setting
Extent to which the accused may have been in a position of authority, domination, or custodial control over the victim
Whether the victim was under duress
Moral, psychological, or intellectual coercion upon a victim is primarily based upon the relative power in the relationship.
There was no threat of force in this account, either implied or direct.
There is no evidence that the victim could not have removed herself from the room and the situation if she had wanted to.
Even though the victim continually said no, under the existing statutes, this evidence alone cannot suffice to support a finding of forcible compulsion.
Evidence of verbal resistance was only found sufficient where coupled with a sufficient threat of forcible compulsion.
If the legislature intended to define rape as non-consensual sexual intercourse, it could have done so.
As a result of this case, the legislature enacted a new offense prohibiting nonforcible, nonconsensual sexual intercourse.