Sexual Assault Lawyers
What is Sexual Assault?
Sexual assault, or indecent assault, is the unconsented sexual contact or touching of another by use or threat of force or violence. Unlike sexual battery, sexual assault does not require penetration to constitute a criminal violation.
What Is Sexual Touching Or Contact?
Sexual touching, or contact, is knowing or purposeful touching of the intimate or private parts of another to arouse sexual desire in either party. The touching may be accomplished either directly or through the clothing. Sexual touching or contact may include actions such as inappropriately grabbing the buttocks of a person, even if covered by clothes.
Can Sexual Assault Be Punishable As Aggravated Assault?
Some states have laws that will make sexual assault punishable as aggravated assault if the force or violence causes bodily harm or injuries to the person who was assaulted. Aggravated assault has increased penalties if convicted.
What About Touching Performed By Medical Personnel, Parents, Or Spouses?
If the medical person, not acting under false representation, is performing a clinical evaluation, then the touching cannot be considered sexual contact. If the touching is by a parent performing necessary domestic functions, then the touching is not sexual contact. If, however, the touching is by a spouse and the elements listed above are met, then the touching may be considered sexual assault.
Does The Force Necessary To Constitute Sexual Assault Need To Be Physical Restraint?
The force can be as simple as the necessary means to make the contact. Furthermore, the amount of force is relative to the person being touching. Obviously, the force necessary to subject touching to an unwitting child differs from that of an adult, and the touching will be found forceful even if slight.
Non-Violent Touching And Physical Helplessness
As implied above, the touching does not have to be violent to be sexual assault. If the touching is unconsented and has the effect of offending a reasonably sensible person, then the touching may constitute sexual assault.
Sexual assault may also be found if the person is unable to communicate consent because they are physically helpless. Physical helplessness may include someone who is unconscious or has blacked out due to alcohol.
Do I Need An Attorney?
Sexual assault is a crime in most states. If you are the victim of sexual assault, contact the authorities to have the assailant arrested. If you would like to pursue a civil case against the individual, then hiring an attorney would be wise.
If you are accussed of sexual assault, you need to speak with a good criminal defense attorney immediately to help protect your rights.
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Last Modified: 11-15-2012 03:44 PM PST