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At the Law Office of Shannon M. Smith, P.C., we focus exclusively on representing the rights of individuals accused of sex crimes throughout the state of Michigan. Whether you are a man, woman, juvenile, or professional - we are here for you when you need us most. We will provide you with the zealous and effective representation that you need.
Degrees of Sexual Criminal Conduct in Michigan
Answers from Experienced Criminal Sexual Conduct Attorneys
At Smith Blythe, PC, our Michigan sex crimes attorneys are here to answer your questions. We have included information about the varying degrees of criminal sexual conduct charges in Michigan in order to help you understand what you could be facing. We believe that equipping our clients with knowledge can be a great benefit to their case.
If you have any further questions about your situation, please arrange for a case evaluation.
What Constitutes First Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct?
In Michigan, a sex crime of the first degree describes a situation in which an individual, either male or female, engaged in sexual penetration with a person who is younger than 13 years of age.
It can also be ascribed to any of the following circumstances:
- The victim was above 13 years of age and younger than 16 years of age, and also living in the same household as the actor.
- The victim was above 13 years of age and younger than 16 years of age, and the actor was in a position of authority over the victim. This could apply to a teacher or school employee, or employee of a child care facility or foster caregiver.
- While aided or abetted by one or more individuals, the actor used force or coercion to sexually penetrate the victim or any actor involved knew the victim was incapacitated mentally or physically.
- The penetration occurred during another felony, such as robbery or kidnapping.
- The actor was armed with a weapon.
- The victim was personally injured due to penetration that occurred due to force or coercion.
- The victim was personally injured due to penetration, and the actor knew or should have known that they victim was physically or mentally incapacitated.
- A physically or mentally incapacitated victim was penetrated by an actor who is related to them by blood or by an actor who is in a position of authority over the victim.
What Constitutes Second Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct?
Second degree criminal sexual conduct in Michigan is generally described by two situations. First, if an individual engaged in sexual contact with a victim who was under the age of 13.
Second, if the victim was less than 16 years of age but over the age of 13, under any of these circumstances:
- The actor is a member of the same household as the victim.
- The actor is a blood relative of the victim.
- The actor is in a position of authority over the victim, and uses this to coerce the victim.
- The actor uses a position as a teacher or other position in the educational field to establish a relationship or gain access to the victim.
- The actor is an employee or volunteer at a childcare facility.
- The actor is a licensed foster caregiver where the victim resides.
- The sexual contact occurred during another felony, such as robbery or kidnapping.
- While aided or abetted by one or more individuals, the actor used force or coercion to commit sexual contact or any actor involved knew the victim was incapacitated mentally or physically.
- The actor was armed with a weapon.
- The victim was personally injured due to sexual contact that occurred due to force or coercion.
- The victim was personally injured due to sexual contact, and the actor knew or should have known that they victim was physically or mentally incapacitated.
- The actor was an employee of a correctional facility and the victim is under the jurisdiction of the correctional facility.
What Constitutes Third Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct?
Third degree sexual conduct in Michigan applies to most situations where an individual, male or female, engages in criminal sexual penetration with another person.
One or more of the following situations must be involved for the charge to be considered 3rd degree:
- The victim was above 13 years of age, but below 16 years of age.
- Force or coercion was used to commit the sexual penetration.
- The actor knew or should have known that the victim was mentally or physically incapacitated during the time of penetration.
- The actor is related to the victim by blood, or by affinity to the third degree.
- The victim is above the age of 16, but below the age of 18, and was enrolled at an educational facility where the actor was employed.
- The victim is above the age of 18, but below the age of 26, and is receiving special education. The actor is an employee of a service that provided this special education.
- The victim is over the age of 16 and resides at a foster care facility or child care service where the actor was an employee, or licensed foster caregiver.
What Constitutes Fourth Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct?
In Michigan, if sexual contact without penetration is alleged, it will fall into either the second or fourth degree of criminal sexual conduct. The fourth degree involves sexual contact, but not penetration, to the genital area, groin, inner thigh, buttocks, or breasts.
If the allegation was not determined to be in the second degree, it can be charged as the fourth degree if any of the following conditions apply:
- If any complaining witnesses are between 13 and 16 years of age, and the actor is at least 5 years older.
- If force or coercion was used to commit the sexual contact.
- The victim is aware the complaining witness is physically or mentally incapacitated.
- If any complaining witnesses are between 16 and 18 years of age and are students in a school or district where the actor was employed.
- If any complaining witness is between the age of 16 and 26 years of age and is receiving special education from a service where the actor is employed.
- If the actor engaged in medical treatment or a medical examination of the complaining witness in a manner or purpose that is considered unethical or unacceptable.
- If the actor is a mental health professional and the criminal sexual conduct occurs within two years of treating the victim.
If you would like to discuss your situation with a skilled Michigan criminal sexual conduct lawyer, call (248) 213-9331 today or contact us online!
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