Evidence of the Intent to Have ''Intercourse'' to Be Convicted of Attempted Criminal Sexual Assault

In People v. Rayfield, 171 Ill. App. 3d 297, 525 N.E.2d 253, 121 Ill. Dec. 447 (1988), the 15-year-old defendant entered the victim's apartment uninvited and asked the victim if she had any work for him. She said she did not, but continued to converse with the defendant. The victim testified that she was frightened by defendant because of his size and race and that she felt sorry for him because he was poor and attended a school for "slow learners." Rayfield, 171 Ill. App. 3d at 298, 525 N.E.2d at 254. At one point the defendant held the victim and, despite her protestations, attempted to carry her toward the bedroom. The victim was able to talk defendant out of any further assault and engaged him in conversation once again. Before he left her apartment, defendant asked the victim if she would show him her vagina. Rayfield, 171 Ill. App. 3d at 298-99, 525 N.E.2d at 254. The issue before the Rayfield court was defendant's intent, not whether he had taken a substantial step. The court, however, misstated the requirements for an attempt (criminal sexual assault) conviction. The Rayfield court stated that an attempt (criminal sexual assault) conviction requires evidence of the intent to have "intercourse" not "sexual penetration," as defined by statute. Rayfield was decided four years after the enactment of current sexual assault laws, which define "sexual penetration" as "contact, however slight with the sex organ" ( 720 ILCS 5/12-12(f) (West 1996)).