Benjamin West

Benjamin West

An Athens man accused of having sex with underage girls is facing two counts of second-degree rape, records show.

Benjamin Brant West, 18, of 21667 Elkton Road, was arrested July 31 on the felony charges following an investigation by the Limestone County Sheriff's Office.

According to the investigation conducted by Investigator Caleb Durden, West is accused of having sexual intercourse with two Limestone County girls on separate occasions in July, said Deputy Stephen Young, public information officer for the sheriff's office. West had sex with one of the girls at his home, Young said.

Young did not know the precise age of the girls but said the two were between ages 12 and 15.

West remained in the Limestone County Jail Thursday afternoon with bail set at $30,000. Neither his release nor his court date had been set.

The law

Under Alabama law, a person commits the crime of second-degree rape one of two ways:

1. He or she is age 16 or older and engages in sexual intercourse with a member of the opposite sex who is over 12 and under 16, assuming the actor is at least two years older than the member of the opposite sex; or

2. He or she engages in sexual intercourse with a member of the opposite sex who is incapable of consent by reason of mental defect.

Second-degree rape is a Class B felony punishable upon conviction by 10 to 20 years in state prison.

Reporter

Reporter for News Courier since 2006.