Criminal Sexual Conduct Second Degree Attorneys in Michigan

If you or someone you know is facing allegations of a criminal sexual conduct in the second degree or a related charge, then you may want to know more about the charge and what it covers. There are more than a thousand criminal sexual conduct second degree offenses reported every year in the state of Michigan. Every year there are cases brought against innocent people who have been caught in the crosshairs of a scornful spouse/partner, or a person looking for revenge or money. When this occurs, you need an experienced CSC attorney who understands the seriousness of the situation and has the experience to get the charges reduced or dropped

Ultimately, you do not want a criminal sexual conduct of any degree on your record. We represent clients in all stages of the legal process. In this section we will review the specific circumstances that a prosecutor must prove for a criminal sexual conduct second degree charge and the penalties associated with a conviction. Then, we will discuss what our CSC 2nd degree lawyers can do about it, and how to begin moving in a positive direction towards getting your life back on track and your name restored.

Criminal sexual conduct in the second degree is a felony offense for sexual contact with aggravating circumstances. A sexual conduct contact offense can be charged as a criminal sexual conduct fourth degree or a criminal sexual conduct second degree. Criminal sexual conduct fourth degree is only a misdemeanor with a maximum penalty of two years in prison, and therefore, is a dramatically less serious charge than a criminal sexual conduct second degree. For a prosecutor to elevate a sexual contact charge from fourth degree to a second degree there needs to be aggravating factors such as force and coercion accompanied by personal injury.

Force and Coercion in CSC 2nd Degree

Force and coercion are two elements that if proved and accompanied by personal injury, then the prosecutor can pursue a criminal sexual conduct second degree charge instead of the misdemeanor criminal sexual conduct fourth degree. The statute for criminal sexual conduct second degree is MCL 750.520c, and it incorporates the definition of force and coercion from the statute for criminal sexual conduct first degree in MCL 750.52b(1)(f). There are several definitions a prosecutor can use to satisfy the force and coercion elements. Some of them relate to the use of physical force to overpower the other person, and some describe using positions of authority or power to put social pressure on the other person to comply. The first factor is when the other person is overcome through the actual use of physical force or violence. However, the Michigan supreme court has stated that force or coercion does not include a requirement to physically overcome the victim. Therefore, although physical force can satisfy the requirement, there can be other situations which include intimidation or threats that can be words alone.

The next two are for when a person threatens to use physical force either immediately or at some point in the future, and the other person believes they have the capability to follow through on those threats. This could be in the case where a person threatens to retaliate against the victim of their family at some point in the future if they report the offense. This is very serious and can result in an additional charge of extortion under MCL 750.213.

Next, when a person uses concealment or surprise to overcome the victim. Michigan courts have held that the use of a disguise for the other person to think that the accused was her fiancé was sufficient to satisfy the use of coercion by concealment. Finally, if a person engages in a medical treatment or examination for purposes that are medically recognized as unethical or unacceptable, then it could be considered coercion for the purposes of a criminal sexual conduct second degree charge.

Personal Injury in CSC 2nd Degree

Personal injury is a very broad term and can encompass both physical injury or mental anguish. Physical injury can be bruises, scratches, and welts. Mental anguish can include seeking therapy, crying and sobbing. Evidence to show that some degree of personal injury is necessary. Therefore, if the evidence of personal injury is contested, then it may be possible to get a reduction in the charge from a criminal sexual conduct second degree to a criminal sexual conduct fourth degree. This is not the only way to seek a charge reduction, but it can take the potential penalty from 15 years down to a maximum of two years in prison. Additionally, criminal sexual conduct fourth degree is the only criminal sexual conduct charge that is a misdemeanor.

Statutory Elements that Elevate a Charge from Criminal Sexual Conduct Fourth Degree to a Criminal Sexual Conduct Second Degree

A criminal sexual contact will be charged as a criminal sexual conduct fourth degree or a sexual conduct second degree. However, a criminal sexual conduct second degree is a much more serious charge and is accompanied by aggravating circumstances such as force, coercion, and personal injury. The following is an additional list of statutorily defined circumstances that would elevate a sexual contact from a criminal sexual conduct fourth degree to a criminal sexual conduct second degree.

Anytime the other person is under 13 years of age a criminal sexual conduct second degree may be charged. Michigan takes sex crimes against minors very seriously, but if the other person is under 13 it is considered an aggravating circumstance all on its own for either sexual penetration or sexual contact. However, you can still be charged for an elevated criminal sexual conduct second degree for sexual contact if the other person was at least 13 years old, but under 16 years old, and any of the following circumstances exist.

Elements that Elevate a Charge from Criminal Sexual Conduct Fourth Degree to a Criminal Sexual Conduct Second Degree When the Other Person Was at Least 13, but Under 16 Years of Age

If the other person was at least 13, but under 16 years of age and is a member of the same household, then there is the potential for a criminal sexual conduct second degree to be charged. Additionally, if the other person is related by blood or affinity of the fourth degree to the other person, the charge will be increased. False accusations of sexual contact occasionally occur when a couple has had a falling out. Feelings get hurt, and sometimes one wants revenge on the other. The unfortunate reality is that these situations do occur, and when they do, you need professional legal representation to demonstrate the reasonable doubt that is necessary to win your case. If you are facing false accusations of criminal sexual conduct, then you deserve redemption and the opportunity to clear your name.

Positions of Authority, Teachers, Students, and Corrections Officers.

The statute detailing the circumstances that can elevate a criminal sexual contact from a criminal sexual conduct fourth degree to a criminal sexual conduct second degree includes specific provisions regarding contacts between people in authority, teachers and students. Anytime you are in a position of authority, or are a teacher, administrator, or employee of a school, you are susceptible to being charged at the elevated degree of a criminal sexual conduct second degree. These cases often have political elements that could or could not involve the media, and that is why it is so important to hire an attorney who has experience working on sex crime cases, because they have important nuances that need to be handled correctly. Our sex crimes attorneys have more than 100 years combined experience winning criminal sexual assault cases, and we understand what it means to have everything on the line and the need to keep a conviction off of your record.

Jail is a difficult place to spend time, either as an inmate or as a correction officer. People are generally unhappy and discontent. When emotionally charged people are confined for prolonged periods of time, they can understandably become desperate. In these cases, accusing their perceived captors of sexually assaultive conduct can and does occur. If you work for a jail or prison as a correction officer, employee, or a service provider, then you are susceptible to being charged under the elevated charge of criminal sexual conduct second degree because of your occupation and role as an authority figure.

Mentally Incapable, Mentally Incapacitated, or Physically Helpless

If the encounter results in physical injury to the other person, and you have reason to know that the other person is mentally incapable, mentally incapacitated, or physically helpless, then you could be charged with criminal sexual conduct second degree. It is important to understand that the courts have decided that this statute employs the reasonable person standard when reviewing if the prosecutor has satisfied his burden of proof for this element. The reasonable person standard view takes an objective look at the facts and circumstances surrounding the situation, and asks what would a reasonable person think in this situation?

Therefore, it is possible for a prosecutor to convince a jury or judge that a reasonable person would have thought the other person was mentally incapable, incapacitated, or physically helpless even if you did not. If you or someone you know may be charged with criminal sexual conduct, then it is imperative that you get out in front of the issue before it goes to trial. We work with people, the prosecutor, and the courts to resolve misunderstandings and fabricated allegations before they even reach trial, because it helps keep your record clean.

Aiding and Abetting

There is a special provision of MCL 750.520c that concerns a sexual contact that involves being aided or abetted by one or more people under particular circumstances. The first instance is if the accused knows or has reason to know the other person is mentally incapable, mentally incapacitated, or physically helpless. Next, if the accused has shown to have used force or coercion. We have already discussed the broad circumstance where force and coercion accompanied by personal injury can be used as aggravating factors to elevate a charge to criminal sexual conduct second degree.

If the Act Occurs During the Commission of Another Felony

If sexual contact occurs under circumstances involving the commission of any other felony. This is something of a catch-all provision the prosecutor has at his or her disposal to elevate a criminal sexual contact charge from criminal sexual conduct fourth degree to a criminal sexual conduct second degree, if they can find any other felony that may have been taking place at the time the accusation is being levied. For instance, if there was a robbery or home invasion, and the other person is accusing you of groping them during the incident. If you are being accused of an additional felony, because the prosecutor wants to elevate an accusation to a criminal sexual conduct second degree charge, then it is crucial that you seek legal representation immediately to combat the felony criminal sexual conduct charge and the additional felony charges that will be pending against you. You need a team of talented attorneys that will pursue every avenue of defense, including seeking overlooked evidence and testimony that may be the seeds of doubt necessary to exonerate you and bring the truth to light.

Potential Penalties for Criminal Sexual Conduct Second Degree

Criminal sexual conduct second degree is a felony offense under MCL 750.520c, and has a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison. Second degree criminal sexual conduct is the only offense under the act that is both a felony and has the possibility of probation. Therefore, it is possible to be convicted and still not go to jail. Additionally, you will have to register as a sex offender if you are convicted of criminal sexual conduct second degree. If the other person is over 13 years of age, then criminal sexual conduct second degree is a tier two offense under the Sex Offender Registration Act (SORA). However, if the other person is younger than 13, then a criminal sexual conduct second degree conviction will require you to be registered as a tier three offender under the Sex Offender Registration Act.

Defense for Criminal Sexual Conduct Second Degree Charges

If you are being accused of criminal sexual conduct second degree or a related sexual conduct charge, then you are facing some of the most serious allegations a person can face in Michigan. A criminal sexual conduct conviction can ruin your career, family, and your future, not to mention you could face a lengthy prison sentence. At Grabel & Associates we have two primary objectives. If your accusation has yet to materialize into formal charges, then we will work to prevent charges from ever being filed to keep your record clean. If you are further along in the criminal process, and you already have charges filed against you, then our primary objective is to win your case and keep a criminal sexual conduct conviction off of your record. Contesting key evidence and pretrial motions are an important part of winning a criminal sexual conduct charge.

Every piece of evidence must be evaluated and deciphered to properly construct the strongest case you can assemble against the prosecution. The good news is that if these allegations lack substance, then we can uncover the reasonable doubt necessary to prevail at trial. These cases are complicated, and it is necessary to work with a team of attorneys who have over 19 years of experience winning sexual conduct cases in Michigan. We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to begin the process of formulating your own individualized defense strategy. Contact us today to schedule your own free consultation at 1-800-883-2138.

Client Reviews

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Great lawyer he went into court and ripped the girl trying to lie on me a new one. He fot me off on all charges and with out him i would be in prision. Thank you so much i will definitely keep your number and pass it on to any one in trouble and keep it for future incase i ever have to go back to court K. J.
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Just starting the case. Scott Grabel is a very down to earth kind of guy. He doesn't rush you and answers your questions very thoroughly. Scott and Tim Doman return calls quickly. We're still early but I will post an update throughout our process. D. J.
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