Involuntary Deviate Sexual Intercourse ("IDSI") Defense Lawyers

The top-rated Philadelphia criminal defense lawyers and sex crime attorneys of Goldstein Mehta LLC can provide a strong defense to Involuntary Deviate Sexual Intercourse charges and in other sex offense cases. Our lawyers regularly defend clients who are accused of all types of sex offenses. We recognize the many possible defenses to these serious, life-changing charges, and we will do everything in our power to help you avoid a conviction and registration on Pennsylvania's Megan's Law. 

What is Involuntary Deviate Sexual Intercourse?  

Involuntary Deviate Sexual Intercourse, which is commonly referred to by the initials IDSI, is a very similar charge to rape. IDSI differs from rape in that it includes additional sex acts such as penetration with foreign objects or sex with an animal. Like rape, IDSI is always a felony of the first degree, and a conviction for IDSI will almost certainly pose devastating consequences including significant jail time, lifetime registration on Megan's Law, and serious problems in obtaining employment. Given the extremely high stakes involved in an IDSI case, it is critical that you consult with one of our experienced criminal defense lawyers if you are facing IDSI charges or any other sex offense charges.

Under Pennsylvania law, a person is guilty of IDSI when the person engages in deviate sexual intercourse with a complainant by forcible compulsion. Therefore, in any IDSI case, the prosecution must be able to prove both that deviate sexual intercourse occurred and that the deviate sexual intercourse occurred because the defendant employed some sort of forcible compulsion

Given that the prosecution must prove deviate sexual intercourse and forcible compulsion on the part of the defendant beyond a reasonable doubt, it is critical that you understand the statutory definitions involved if you are facing IDSI charges. Forcible compulsion involves conduct such as preventing the other person from resisting by force or threats of force, having deviate sexual intercourse with someone who is unconscious or incapable of consent to a mental condition, giving drugs or alcohol to someone so that they cannot resist, or having deviate sexual intercourse with someone who is less than 16 years old if the defendant is four years older than the complainant and the defendant and complainant are not married. More simply, forcible compulsion generally involves engaging in deviate sexual intercourse without consent. 

Deviate sexual intercourse is defined as "[s]exual intercourse per os or per anus between human beings and any form of sexual intercourse with an animal. The term also includes penetration, however slight, of the genitals or anus of another person with a foreign object for any purpose other than good faith medical, hygienic or law enforcement procedures." Sexual intercourse per os generally means oral sex while sexual intercourse per anus means anal sex. Given these two definitions, the involuntary deviate sexual intercourse statute essentially criminalizes oral and anal sex where the sex was obtained by some sort of force, threat, or other form of duress.   

Defenses to Involuntary Deviate Sexual Intercourse Charges

Zak T. Goldstein, Esq - Philadelphia Criminal Defense Attorney

Zak T. Goldstein, Esq - Philadelphia Criminal Defense Attorney

If you are charged with IDSI, it is critical that you do not delay in retaining an attorney who can help you begin planning a defense. Our Philadelphia criminal defense lawyers have experience defending against IDSI charges and other sex offenses. Depending on the allegations, there are a number of potential defenses in sex offense cases. 

In many cases, trials involving sex charges are going to involve issues such as the credibility of the complainant, whether the complainant may have actually consented and later begun telling a different story, or whether the offensive touching was some sort of mistake or misunderstanding. A prompt and thorough investigation of the allegations is absolutely critical in defending these charges because valuable evidence could be lost due to delay.

When you retain our criminal defense lawyers, we can immediately begin investigating your case, and we can have our investigators look for other witnesses or surveillance footage which may show that the incident did not happen or that there are problems with the complainant's credibility. Likewise, we will cross-examine the complainant in pre-trial hearings and at trial to show whether there are any inconsistencies in the statements made to police and testimony in court. There are a number of reasons why people accuse each other of crimes which did not happen. These reasons include anger, spite, jealousy, financial motivations, revenge and simple miscommunications. In many cases, the police and District Attorney bring charges based solely on the complainant's word, so we will investigate to determine whether there are reasons why the complainant may be fabricating the story. It is always important to conduct a thorough examination into the credibility of the allegations and investigate for possible alibi evidence or other evidence that show the contact could not have occurred. IDSI cases also may involve challenging forensic evidence such as DNA through the use of expert witnesses.  

Our Philadelphia sex offense lawyers will thoroughly analyze the allegations against you, investigate whether there may be any exculpatory evidence, and help you determine the best options and defenses to these charges. In some cases, it may be best to go to trial and seek an acquittal. In others, we have been able to negotiate pleas to other non-sex offense charges which will not trigger mandatory sex offender registration under Megan's Law or to significantly reduced sentences. Ultimately, every case is different, and we can help you find the best options for your individual situation. We are also cognizant of the sensitive nature of sex offense allegations. We will not judge you, and we offer complete confidentiality. 

Sentencing for Involuntary Deviate Sexual Intercourse

A conviction for IDSI is very likely to result in significant jail time, and IDSI always requires lifetime registration with the Pennsylvania State Police on Megan's Law. Normally, felonies of the first degree are punishable by up to twenty years in prison. However, the IDSI statute provides increased maximum potential sentences under certain circumstances. For example, if you are convicted of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a child, meaning the complainant was under the age of 13, then the maximum penalty for IDSI doubles and becomes 40 years in prison instead of 20 years. Further, if you are convicted of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a child under the age of 13 and the child suffers serious bodily injury during the course of the IDSI, then the maximum sentence becomes life in prison instead of the maximum 20 years that would normally be possible with a conviction for a first degree felony.

Although judges are unlikely to be sympathetic following an IDSI conviction, it is important to remember that because most Pennsylvania mandatory minimums have been eliminated by decisions of the United States and Pennsylvania Supreme Courts, there is currently no mandatory minimum sentence for IDSI. This means that it is absolutely critical that if you are facing IDSI charges, you retain a criminal defense lawyer who has the experience to prepare both to challenge the charges at trial and to present a persuasive sentencing case to the judge in the event of a conviction.   

It is critical to be prepared both for trial and sentencing because although the judge must require lifetime registration on Megan's Law, the sentencing judge retains an enormous amount of discretion when deciding what sentence to impose on a defendant convicted of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse. For example, under the Pennsylvania sentencing guidelines, IDSI involving forcible compulsion has an Offense Gravity Score of 12. This means that a defendant with no prior record who has a Prior Record Score of zero will be facing guidelines of 48-66 +/- 12.

The Pennsylvania sentencing guidelines provide a range of possible minimum sentences for the judge to impose. Therefore, a guideline sentence for IDSI for someone with no record could range from a fully mitigated sentence with a minimum of 3 years in prison to a fully aggravated minimum sentence of 6.5 years in prison. In Pennsylvania, the maximum sentence must always be at least twice the minimum sentence, so the range of potential sentences is significant. Our experienced sex crimes lawyers know both how to challenge these cases in the courtroom and present persuasive arguments to the prosecution and judge in order to obtain reduced sentences in the event of a conviction. 

Our Sex Offense Lawyers Can Help

If you are facing involuntary deviate sexual intercourse charges or any other charges for a sex offense, you need one of our experienced criminal defense lawyers immediately. Given the serious consequences of a conviction for involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, it is important you move quickly. We offer a free 15 minute criminal defense strategy session to each potential client. Call 267-225-2545 to begin building your defense. 


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The Pennsylvania IDSI Statute

§ 3123.  Involuntary deviate sexual intercourse.

(a)  Offense defined.--A person commits a felony of the first degree when the person engages in deviate sexual intercourse with a complainant:

(1)  by forcible compulsion;

(2)  by threat of forcible compulsion that would prevent resistance by a person of reasonable resolution;

(3)  who is unconscious or where the person knows that the complainant is unaware that the sexual intercourse is occurring;

(4)  where the person has substantially impaired the complainant's power to appraise or control his or her conduct by administering or employing, without the knowledge of the complainant, drugs, intoxicants or other means for the purpose of preventing resistance;

(5)  who suffers from a mental disability which renders him or her incapable of consent; or

(6)  (Deleted by amendment).

(7)  who is less than 16 years of age and the person is four or more years older than the complainant and the complainant and person are not married to each other.

(b)  Involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a child.--A person commits involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a child, a felony of the first degree, when the person engages in deviate sexual intercourse with a complainant who is less than 13 years of age.

(c)  Involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a child with serious bodily injury.--A person commits an offense under this section with a child resulting in serious bodily injury, a felony of the first degree, when the person violates this section and the complainant is less than 13 years of age and the complainant suffers serious bodily injury in the course of the offense.

(d)  Sentences.--Notwithstanding the provisions of section 1103 (relating to sentence of imprisonment for felony), a person convicted of an offense under:

(1)  Subsection (b) shall be sentenced to a term of imprisonment which shall be fixed by the court at not more than 40 years.

(2)  Subsection (c) shall be sentenced up to a maximum term of life imprisonment.

(e)  Definition.--As used in this section, the term "forcible compulsion" includes, but is not limited to, compulsion resulting in another person's death, whether the death occurred before, during or after the sexual intercourse.