Sexual Assault & Sexual Battery Defense in Orange County - California Penal Code 243.4
If you have been accused of sexual assault or sexual battery in Orange County, you may be facing significant penalties that may affect you in the long term. Just being accused of sexual assault or sexual battery can put your employment in jeopardy or ruin your reputation in the community.
A sexual assault or sexual battery charge comes with penalties including jail or prison time, probation, hefty fines and mandatory lifetime registration as a sex offender. This is why it is crucial that you mount a strong defense to fight the charges against you. The experienced sex crime defense attorneys at Law Office of Michael L. Guisti can help protect your freedom and reputation. Contact us at (714) 530-9690 to find out how we can help you.
Call us today at (714) 530-9690 to discuss your case in a free case evaluation!
In California, sexual assault, which is also known as sexual battery, is a serious crime. California Penal Code 243.4 prohibits touching the intimate parts of another person for sexual gratification, arousal or abuse. While sexual battery is often charged as a misdemeanor, it can result in felony charges punishable by a lengthy prison sentence. Anyone facing sexual battery charges in Orange County would be well advised to fight the charges to protect their future and reputation.
Misdemeanor sexual assault cases typically involve the intentional fondling of breasts or buttocks without consent. A misdemeanor can rise to the level of a felony if:
- The alleged victim was unaware of the nature of the act because it occurred in a professional or medical setting, such as an inappropriate physical conduct by a doctor or nurse.
- The alleged victim was unlawfully restrained.
- The incident involved an institutionalized, medically incapacitated or disabled individual.
- The victim was forced to masturbate or touch the other person for sexual gratification.
It is a felony for one person to touch another person while forcefully holding them down. It is also a felony if a therapist fondles a patient or if a mentally ill person is forced to perform sex acts.
It’s important to understand the differences between a misdemeanor and a felony because the penalties are significantly different. A conviction for misdemeanor sexual battery in Orange County typically carries a maximum sentence of six months in jail, but it can result in a 12-month sentence and a fine of $2,000 under certain circumstances. It’s even possible for a conviction to result in a $3,000 fine if the victim was an employee of the person charged. Felony sexual battery in Orange County can result in up to four years of incarceration and a maximum fine of $10,000.
Both misdemeanor and felony convictions for sexual battery are sex crimes that will require the defendant to register as a sex offender. Having this on your record can result in financial, social and professional problems that could be permanent.
"Thankfully the legal experts at Law Office of Michael L. Guisti freed me of all charges. Mr. Guisti was very efficient in going to court and getting my sexual battery charge dismissed. When I first met Mr. Guisti he was very welcoming and non-judgmental, and that met a lot to me. Thank God for Mr. Guisti and his people. I tell people at my church group to go to Michael L. Guisti whenever they have trouble."
It is crucial for individuals facing sexual battery charges to build a strong defense. Common legal defenses in these cases include:
- Consent: If the victim is an adult with a mental capacity to consent to the act and then willingly participated in a sexual act, it is not battery.
- Insufficient evidence: The court must prove that you carried out the sexual assault without consent.
- False allegations: Some defendants are innocent and wrongfully accused.
No matter the circumstances of your case, it would be in your best interest to get a criminal defense attorney who will fight hard to protect you. It may be possible to have your case dismissed and penalties reduced, depending on the facts and circumstances of the case. The Orange County violent crime defense attorneys at Law Office of Michael L. Guisti can provide you with the facts you need to make an informed decision. Call us today at (714) 530-9690 to discuss your case.
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Whether you're facing a felony or a misdemeanor, don't risk a conviction. Act quickly to redeem your reputation and protect your record by consulting with our Orange County criminal defense lawyer. Call today to schedule your free consultation.