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Columbus Sexual Battery Defense Attorney

Columbus Sexual Battery Defense AttorneyHave you been arrested for or charged with the crime of sexual battery in Ohio? If so, call Columbus sexual battery defense attorney Adam Burke as soon as possible. The negative consequences of a sexual battery conviction have the potential to change your life forever. The best way to prevent or reduce debilitating criminal and non-criminal consequences is by hiring an attorney to represent you.

Attorney Adam Burke will investigate the basis for any charges against you, highlight information that supports your defense, and point to weaknesses in the prosecutor’s case against you. Adam has more than a decade of experience tenaciously defending clients against criminal charges. Contact his Columbus, OH office today to learn about how he can help to limit the consequences you may face for sexual battery charges against you.

Sexual Battery in Ohio

What exactly is sexual battery? How is it different from other Ohio sexual assault crimes? Is sexual battery the same as rape? These are all questions that Columbus sex crime attorneys have gotten from clients who face sexual battery charges. It is important to understand what sexual battery is, what the prosecution must prove to convict you, and how it differs from other Ohio sex crimes.

Sexual battery, as defined in Section 2907.03 of the Ohio Revised Code, is the crime of engaging in sexual conduct with another person without his or her consent. To understand when a sexual battery occurs it is important to understand two key elements of the crime: sexual conduct and consent.

Sexual Conduct

Sexual battery is the crime of engaging in unwanted sexual conduct. What is sexual conduct in Ohio? Sexual conduct is the act of sexual penetration. It includes vaginal, oral, and anal penetration. Penetration can be done with a body part or foreign object. Sexual conduct is – in Ohio law – more intrusive and offensive than sexual contact.

Consent

Sexual battery is the crime of engaging in sexual penetration without consent. What, though, is consent? Generally, consent is the affirmative agreement of another person to engage in some activity. Consent also requires the ability to agree. This ability must be both physical and mental. When it comes to sexual battery, Ohio law specifically designates situations where consent is not present. You can be charged with sexual battery if you engage in sexual conduct when:

  1. You coerce the other person to submit by any means that would prevent a person of “ordinary resolution” from resisting;
  2. You know that the other person’s ability to appraise the nature of the situation is substantially impaired;
  3. You know that the other person’s ability to control his or her conduct is substantially impaired;
  4. You know that the other person submits only because he or she is unaware that the act is being committed;
  5. You know that the other person only submits because he or she mistakenly identifies you as his or her spouse; or
  6. You hold a position of power or authority over the other person.

A position of power or authority, for the purposes of the crime of sexual battery, can include:

  1. A natural or adoptive parent, stepparent, guardian, or other legal guardian;
  2. Persons with supervisory or disciplinary authority over someone who is custody of the law or a patient in a hospital;
  3. A teacher, administrator, or coach at a school when the victim is a minor enrolled at or attends that school;
  4. Athletic coach, instructor, scout or group leader, or person with other temporary  or occasional disciplinary control when the victim is a minor;
  5. Mental health professionals when the victim is a patient or client and the conduct is falsely represented as necessary for mental health treatment;
  6. Detention center employees when the victim is confined to that facility;
  7. Cleric or other member of clergy when the victim is a minor who attends that congregation or church; or
  8. A peace officer when the victim is a minor and at least two years younger than the officer.

This is not an exhaustive list – the statute leaves room for interpretation and expansion. Contact an experienced Columbus sexual battery defense attorney to learn more about sexual battery and consent.

Criminal Penalties for Sexual Battery in Ohio

The penalties for sexual battery in Ohio will depend on the facts and circumstances of each specific case. However, sexual battery is generally a 3rd Degree Felony offense in Ohio. If you are convicted of a 3rd Degree Felony in Ohio you may be sentenced to 1 to 5 years in prison and be required to pay fines of up to $10,000.

Aggravating factors – such as the age of the victim, degree of force used, and serious bodily harm inflicted on the victim – can cause the criminal penalties to be more severe. If, for example, the victim of a sexual battery is under the age of 13, you may be charged with a 2nd Degree Felony. If convicted, you would be required to serve at least 2 years in prison, and as many as 8.

Other Consequences of a Sexual Battery Conviction in Ohio

The criminal sanctions of probation, fines, and imprisonment can be severe. In Ohio, you can also face consequential consequences for a conviction of sexual battery. The most notable consequential consequence is the requirement to register as a sex offender with the state of Ohio. In Ohio, there are three “tiers” – or classifications – of registered sex offenders. Tier I is the classification for the less severe sex offenses. Tier III is the classification for the most egregious sex offenses. Sexual battery is a Tier III sex crime in Ohio.

Sex offenders who must register under the Tier III classification will be required to register with the County Sheriff every 90 days for life. Tier III sex offenders must also alert the County Sheriff to any change in address, employment, or enrollment in a school.

If you are listed as sex offender in Ohio your name, photograph, and information about the crime you committed will be part of a searchable public record. Schools, neighbors, day-care providers, and law enforcement within 1,250 feet of your residence will be notified of your presence in the area and your status as a Tier III sex offender.

If you have a criminal record reflecting a conviction for sexual battery and are a Tier III sex offender you may have difficulty landing a job, getting a loan for school, or finding a new apartment or home.

Defending Sexual Battery Charges in Ohio

In order to get a conviction for sexual battery, the prosecution will have to prove (1) you engaged in sexual conduct with another person and (2) that person was unwilling or unable to legally consent. When you hire an experienced Columbus sexual battery defense attorney to represent you, it will be his job to make the prosecutor’s job as difficult as possible. Your attorney will thoroughly investigate the sexual battery allegations against you to find evidence that will cast doubt on your alleged guilt. Possible defenses to sexual battery in Ohio include false allegations, mistaken identity, and consent of the victim.

Your attorney will also investigate the circumstances of your arrest and any searches of your property. If you were the victim of illegal searches and seizures and/or an improper arrest, your attorney can file a motion with the court to have any illegally-obtained evidence thrown out.

Experienced Columbus Sexual Battery Defense Attorney

The prosecution will begin to investigate and build a criminal case against you as soon as you are arrested. The best way to limit the negative criminal and consequential consequences of sexual battery charges is to hire an experienced Columbus criminal defense attorney to handle your case.

If you have been accused of, arrested for, and/or charged with the crime of sexual battery in Ohio do not hesitate to contact an attorney for help. The sooner you hire a criminal defense attorney, the better your chances of limiting the potential consequences of a conviction. Call the experienced Columbus sexual battery defense attorney Adam Burke today to learn more.

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Burke, Meis & Associates

ADDRESS

625 City Park Ave, Suite 200A
Columbus, Ohio 43206

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614.280.9122

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614.556.4988