Facing charges for Sexual Battery? Even the mere mention or accusation of
Sexual Battery can devastate your life, reputation, career, and your personal relationships.
A conviction for this crime carries life-long sex registration including
county jail or state prison time. Consult with one of our experienced
and knowledgeable criminal defense attorneys in Los Angeles who can aggressively
defend you in court, including trial, and protect your rights.
Sexual Battery is the unwanted touching of another person's intimate
parts. Sexual Battery is a crime in most states. Sexual Battery can be
charged as either a felony or a misdemeanor. In determining how to charge
the crime, prosecutors primarily consider the defendant's criminal
history, the victim's condition and circumstances and whether the
defendant touched the victim's bare skin. The California Sexual Battery
Laws are in Penal Code section 243.4.
Misdemeanor Sexual Battery
Misdemeanor Sexual Battery is touching an "intimate part" (breast,
buttocks, anus, groin, sexual organ, buttocks) of a victim,
- And the touching is against the will of the victim,
- And the touching is for the specific purpose of sexual arousal, sexual
gratification or "sexual abuse" (insulting, humiliating, intimidating
or physically harming the victim by touching his or her intimate part(s)).
Penal Code 243.4(e).
Misdemeanor sexual battery does not require the defendant to have contact
with the victim's skin (i.e., the touching can be done entirely through
the offender's and victim's clothing).
Sexual Battery--Misdemeanor or Felony
Penal Code sections 243.4(a)-(d) cover the sexual battery of restrained,
incapacitated and deceived victims. These offenses are "wobblers,"
meaning that they can be charged as either felonies or misdemeanors. For
these offenses, "touching" is defined as physical contact with
the skin of the victim, whether directly, or through the offender's
clothing. Like misdemeanor sexual battery, the touching must be against
the victim's will and the touching must be done for the purpose of
sexual arousal, sexual gratification or "sexual abuse." The
victim must be:
- Unlawfully restrained - Penal Code section 243.4(a),
- Seriously disabled or medically incapacitated and institutionalized for
medical treatment - Penal Code section 243.4(b), or
- Unconscious of the act because the offender has fraudulently represented
that the touching served a professional purpose - Penal Code 243.4(c), or
Additionally if the victim is unlawfully restrained or institutionalized
and disabled/incapacitated, forcing the victim to masturbate or touch
an "intimate part" of the victim, offender or a third party
is sexual battery (Penal Code 243.4(d)).
Sexual Battery Penalties
Whether charged as a misdemeanor or felony, a sexual battery conviction
requires lifelong registration as a sex offender. Misdemeanor Sexual Battery
is punishable by up to six months in county jail and/or up to $2000 in
fines and informal probation. Felony Sexual Battery is punishable by up
to 4 years in state prison and, a maximum fine of $10,000.
The following list of defenses to a sexual battery is not exhaustive, but
are common defenses to sexual battery and
Consent: Many individuals are accused of sexual battery because of a mistaken belief
that the victim had consented to being touched. If there is proof that
the offender's belief of the victim's consent was both reasonable
and knowledgeable, the prosecutor may dismiss the sexual battery charges,
or reduce them to a lesser offense.
False Allegations: Alleged victims falsely accuse individuals for a variety of reasons.
In a sexual battery case, there are usually no other witnesses and no
evidence of the crime. Resolving these cases often rest on who is more
Los Angeles Sexual Battery Attorneys
At Stephen G. Rodriguez & Partners, we realize how serious a sexual
battery allegation is and we have proven strategies for building an effective
defense. All legal options will be pursued to secure the best possible
outcome in your case, including plea negotiations, trial defense and alternative
sentencing. We handle all types of sex crime cases, and as experienced
and aggressive attorneys we will put our experience to work for you. We
Call Stephen G. Rodriguez & Partners to speak with a qualified, experienced
criminal defense attorney. Initial consultations are FREE.