They’re among the most heinous offenses handled by law enforcement and advocacy centers, but rape and sexual assaults among adults are also considered one of the most difficult and challenging cases to prosecute because of the many components that can cloud a case when an accusation is made by a victim.

In Arizona and Colorado, rape and sexual assault are considered the same under the law. But there are different definitions for each offense. Rape generally refers to the crime of having forcible sexual intercourse with another person without the consent of the “victim.” Sexual assault is defined as intentionally making physical contact with the intimate body parts of another person, doing so without that person’s consent.

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