Sexual battery is a serious offense that falls just one step below rape or sexual assault. If you or someone in your family are facing this charge, you need to get legal help. Depending on the circumstances, you could face up to a year in jail or 4 years in state prison—and you will be required to register as a sex offender, which is public information anywhere you live. Do not let a single incident ruin the rest of your life. You need to talk to a Los Angeles sexual battery lawyer.
Simmrin Law Group can help. Our law firm was founded with one mission: to help those who are accused and to help you put the past behind you. We understand that any accusation of sexual impropriety can have far-reaching consequences on your career, your family and your life. No matter what the circumstances of your arrest, we want to help you. In many cases you may be able to beat the charge or get it reduced to something much less serious.
Let us offer you a FREE consultation. Fill out the form to the right or call us at 310-997-4688 and get your free consultation today.
What exactly is sexual battery?
In Los Angeles, sexual battery is a sex crime that is separate from rape, although both may be referred to as sexual assault. The defining characteristic of sexual battery is that there is unwanted or forced touching, but no sexual intercourse. It can also involve physically overpowering someone for sexual release or sexual abuse. No penetration has to be committed to be convicted of sexual battery.
The legal definition of sexual battery comes from California Penal Code Section 243.3. Strictly speaking, it outlaws any form of:
Touching the intimate parts of someone else,
Against their will/without their consent
For sexual arousal, sexual gratification or abuse
The touching can be either through clothing or directly on the bare intimate part in question. However, sexual battery is more serious if it involves direct touching without clothing, or any forced entry such as unbuttoning the person’s pants to touch them. These forms of sexual batter are likely to be charged as a felony.
What counts as an “intimate body part” for sexual battery?
In most cases, it means either the:
What are the penalties for sexual battery in Los Angeles?
Sexual battery can be charged as either a felony or a misdemeanor, and the penalties are different for each one.
Up to 6 months in country jail (or 1 year under aggravating circumstances*),
A fine of up to $2,000 ($3,000 if you are the employer of the victim),
5 years’ probation, and
You must register as a sex offender
*The “aggravating circumstances” would include physically restraining the victim, using your authority to prevent the victim from leaving, or using your position as a doctor or therapist to facilitate the inappropriate touching.
2, 3 or 4 years in state prison,
Up to $10,000 in fines,
Supervised probation after your release, and
You must register as a sex offender
What defenses can I use? Can I win my sexual battery case?
Yes, it is possible to win a sexual battery case. In fact, this is often a very difficult charge for the prosecution to prove, because it is very hard to assemble evidence of sexual battery. Even if the police or prosecutor told you they have an airtight case—you may still be able to win.
Some of the most effective defenses against sexual battery include:
Not enough evidence. Many sexual battery cases come down to “he said/she said.” That does not count as evidence. If the victim cannot produce a witness, or physical evidence such as signs of bruising and injury, then you cannot be convicted. In fact, cases like this could even be dismissed without ever going to trial.
The act was consensual. One of the most common defenses is used when the victim actually consented to the touching, or you had reason to believe that they consented. Consent can be confusing because it can be retracted at any time, and consent is often not stated explicitly. For example, if the other person showed that they were willing through their actions or demeanor, the act is consensual unless they explicitly said they wanted to stop. We can help show that the other person consented in your case.
It’s a false accusation. It’s hard to know exactly how many sexual assault claims are false accusations. They are an ideal way to harm the reputation of the accused because they are humiliating and it’s hard to disprove them. This can be used as revenge or simply out of anger. Likewise, some mentally unstable people may use these kinds of accusations as a way to gain attention. If you believe this may be what happened in your case, we can help construct a case around the alleged victim’s behavior and intentions.
These are only some of the defenses available to someone accused of sexual battery. A good lawyer can help you put together the right defense for your specific case.
Talk to a Los Angeles Sexual Battery Attorney for Free
The consequences of a sex crime conviction can be lifelong. Don’t let a single incident define who you are for years to come. At the Simmrin Law Group, we will act as your counsel and your ally in the court system. No matter what the circumstances of your case, we will defend you like you are a member of our own family.
Contact us and get a free consultation on your case. Fill out the form to the right or call us at 310-997-4688 and get your free consultation today.