Criminal acts come in various categories and with different consequences. Sexual crimes are seen in the eyes of the law as some of the most egregious crimes and therefore are met with severe and stiff penalties. Sexual assault is a type of crime where an offender forces themselves on someone else in a sexual manner that is both non-consensual and highly inappropriate. In Massachusetts, sexual assault falls into two different categories: aggravated sexual assault or indecent assault and battery.
If your crime is indecent sexual assault and battery and the victim is harmed due to your actions, then charges can be escalated to the more serious aggravated sexual assault. If there is any medical intervention necessary due to the sexual assault, then the case becomes one of aggravated sexual assault and it is met with much harsher penalties, charges, and consequences, which can include prison. Regardless of what someone is accused of, the premise is the same: someone sexually contacted a victim through manipulation, coercion, or force.
What are the elements of indecent sexual assault and battery?
There are four different elements that someone can be accused of under the classification of indecent sexual assault and battery. These are indecent assault and battery on:
A person who is over fourteen
The maximum penalty for indecent assault and battery on a person who is over 14 years old ranges from two and a half years to five years in state prison. It is defined as touching an individual over the age of fourteen in a way that is offensive to the other person’s moral values, which includes any type of sexual touching.
A child who is under fourteen
If someone touches a child who is under the age of fourteen on their genitals, buttocks, or breasts, they can be charged with Indecent assault and battery on a child. The longest penalty can be two and a half years in a corrections facility up to ten years in state prison.
A disabled or elderly person
Indecent assault and battery on an elderly or disabled person are when a defendant is accused of touching an individual who is either elderly or who is disabled either physically or mentally. The least severe consequence for being found guilty is five years in state prison and can go up to a maximum of ten years.
An individual with intellectual disability
If someone engages in non-consensual touching someone who has intellectual disabilities, the minimum penalty is five years in state prison up to a maximum of ten years.
Kinds of aggravated indecent sexual assault and battery
If you engage in indecent sexual assault and it causes harm to someone, then it will be escalated to an aggravated indecent assault charge by a sexual assault lawyer.
If you are accused of touching someone sexually and they are under the age of fourteen, then it is automatically considered aggravated; the minimum penalty is ten years in prison and the maximum, depending on the egregiousness of the act, can be life in prison.
If you are accused of indecent sexual assault, then you might or might not have to register as a sex offender on the Registry Board. If you don’t follow the conditions of your sentencing, then you can face other severe consequences, including being remanded to jail if you’ve been previously released.
Touching another individual without their consent is strictly prohibited due to the sex crimes statutes in Massachusetts. If you are accused of touching another person, it is imperative that you hire a sexual assault attorney to represent you. Since being found guilty can forever alter your future and limit you from things like getting a job or even housing opportunities, having someone to defend you is essential. If you have been charged with aggravated indecent sexual assault, it is even more critical to get the right representation. If found guilty, you could be facing life in prison.