NYC Aggravated Sexual Abuse Lawyers
In New York State, aggravated sexual abuse in the first degree is one of the most heinous acts an individual can perpetrate against another. As such, it’s classified as a class B felony and carries stiff prison terms. Due to the serious nature of the acts involved, a conviction can carry prison terms of up to 25 years. Additionally, you will be required to register as a convicted sex offender upon your release from prison, which may affect where you can live and what types of jobs you may hold. A conviction for this crime may also affect your relationships with family members and friends.
The Elements of Aggravated Sexual Abuse in the First Degree
There are a few factors which must be met to justify the charge of aggravated sexual abuse. The act itself involves using a foreign object to penetrate the bodily orifices of the victim. The orifices described under the penal law are those of the vagina, penis, urethra, anus, or rectum. Additionally, the foreign object, which remains undefined by the law, must be inserted by force. In past cases, a bottle has been shoved into the rectum of a victim (People v. Morrow, ___ A.D.3d ___ )and a stick has been forcefully inserted into the vagina of another victim (People v. Lackey, 36 A.D.3d 953 ).
While the exact nature of a foreign object isn’t defined by the law, the penal code does define what is meant by force. This is because force can be implied through a variety of means. The most commonly understood definition of force is physical compulsion, which involves forcibly inserting the object into the orifice of a victim. The victim did not consent and may be resisting the assault, causing the attacker to use violence or physical strength to commit the act.
Additionally, if the victim complies for fear for his or her safety or for the safety of a loved one, this is also considered force in this regard. For instance, if the attacker threatens to kill the victim, unless she complies, this constitute force under the law. Similarly, telling a victim that you will kidnap a loved one and harm them unless they comply is also considered a use of force.
If the victim is physically helpless to resist or is otherwise unable to grant consent, this is also considered force under the penal code. This means inserting a foreign object into a rectum or vagina of an unconscious victim. If there is any reason the victim cannot respond or resist, this is also considered force by the law. While you may render the person physically helpless through your own acts, such as binding them with rope, this is not necessary. The law states that you may come across someone in a helpless state and that’s enough to imply force in this situation.
Finally, age can imply force. Under the aggravated sexual abuse law in New York, a victim age 11 or younger cannot consent. Therefore, force is implied, where the victim is 11 years old or younger. The inability of a young child to grant consent raises the issue of force under the law.
What You Can Expect in an Aggravated Sexual Abuse Case
You won’t be granted the privilege of receiving a desk appearance ticket, as is the case with some criminal charges. Instead, you will be immediately taken into custody, booked at the police station, and will remain in custody until your arraignment. The arraignment will be several hours later, which will give the prosecutor time to review your case.
By the time you’re brought to court for your arraignment, aggravated sexual abuse in the first degree may not be the only charges levied against you. The prosecutor can add other charges, which may include first degree rape and first degree sexual abuse, as well as predatory sexual assault, or the predatory sexual assault of a child or minor. You may also be charged with non-sexual crimes, such as kidnapping and assault. The exact charges will depend on the unique circumstances of your case.
You Will Need an Attorney
You should hire a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. Foremost, he may be able to get the prosecutor to drop some of the charges against you and reduce other charges. He may also be able to arrange a plea deal that will get you a reduced sentence and help you avoid a trial that may result in a more devastating outcome.
If your case does go to trial, your attorney will need all of the information you can provide, so he can formulate a strong strategy for your defense. This may include speaking to the victim and finding out if he or she did consent to the interaction. If the alleged victim was an adult at the time of the incident and did consent, his or her statement may be enough to get the charges dropped. Otherwise, your attorney will mount a defense that will help to get you the best possible outcome for your case.