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Sexual Battery Laws in Maine

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Maine Sexual Battery Lawyers

Sexual Battery Laws in the state of Maine

Rape is one of the most serious offenses in the criminal justice system. It occurs when one person forces sexual intercourse on another without the person’s consent, or against the person’s will.

In most states, sexual battery is a lesser form of the crime and typically involves touching without penetration or sodomy.

An accusation of sexual battery is dire — your reputation and freedom are on the line.
The skilled attorneys of the Maine Criminal Defense Group can devise an effective defense strategy to help you weather the storm.

Table of Contents

  1. Lack of consent sex crimes in Maine
  2. Gross sexual assault in Maine
  3. Sexual activity between people in certain relationships
  4. Unlawful sexual conduct in Maine
    1. Unlawful sexual touching
  5. Defense against gross sexual assault
  6. Penalties for gross sexual assault in Maine
  7. Sex offender registry in Maine
  8. Contact a Maine sex crime lawyer today
  9. Sex Crimes Blog Posts

Proving lack of consent is the cornerstone of any rape or sexual battery case. Any type of sexual conduct becomes criminal if sexual touch is not consented to because:

  1. The offender forces another person into intercourse or sexual contact against his or her will.
  2. The victim is considered incapable of consent (as a result of incapacitation from drugs, alcohol, injury, etc.) or to have reduced cognitive ability to consent.

Under a certain age, such as fourteen, fifteen, or sixteen years old, minors are deemed incapable of consenting to sexual touching no matter their mental capacity to comprehend the sexual conduct or their ability to refuse. Most states define sexual contact with a minor as “statutory rape.”

Further, sex with the following people is unlawful if they do not have the mental capability to knowingly consent:

  • A developmentally disabled person
  • Someone who is mentally ill, and
  • Someone who is debilitated – drunk, drugged or unconscious – or otherwise physically powerless.

For more information on sexual battery, sexual assault and gross sexual assault in Maine, consult with a knowledgeable attorney at the Maine Criminal Defense Group as soon as possible.

Gross sexual assault in Maine

A person is guilty of committing gross sexual assault in Maine if they engage in a sex act — oral or anal sex or direct genital contact — when the victim does not consent or lacks the capacity to consent.

According to Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 17-A, § § 251, 253, offenders may be charged with aggravated gross sexual assault and face increased penalties under the following circumstances:

  • The victim submits due to compulsion — force or threats of force, injury, or kidnapping or
  • The victim is younger than 14 and is not wed to the defendant.

If, during the commission of the sexual contact, the offender causes the victim injury or offensive physical conduct with the victim’s body, they may also be charged with assault.

In Maine, a sex act may be deemed gross sexual assault when:

  • The defendant uses drugs or intoxicants to interfere with the victim’s self-control.
  • The defendant compels the victim to submit to the act by threats of force or harm.
  • The defendant takes advantage of a person’s mental disability, which renders the victim unable to consent to or comprehend the act.
  • The victim is physically incapable of resisting or unconscious.
  • The defendant is the victim’s parent or guardian, and the victim is younger than 18.
  • The defendant has official authority over the victim and the victim is a probationer, prisoner or parolee.

These are only a few examples of conduct that may be considered gross sexual assault. If you are arrested for sexual battery in Maine, contact an experienced defense lawyer immediately.

Sexual activity between people in certain relationships

In Maine, you may be charged with gross sexual assault by engaging in a sex act under the following circumstances:

  • You are a teacher or school employee having a relationship with a minor student over whom you supervise/teach.
  • You work at a day care, youth facility, or drug treatment center and have a relationship with a minor resident.
  • You work as a psychiatrist, psychologist, or licensed social worker and begin a relationship with a worker, patient or client.
  • While working for an organization that offers disability services, you have a relationship with a person with an intellectual disability or autism.
  • You are an employed caretaker overseeing a person incapable of caring for him or herself.

If police arrest you for gross sexual assault, remain calm and silent. After booking, you will have an opportunity to call your attorney. With proper guidance, you can build a bulwark defense to safeguard your future.

Unlawful sexual conduct in Maine

In Maine, it is also considered a crime to engage in unlawful sexual conduct — genital or anal touching — with another person, if the victim has not consented, submits as a result of compulsion, or is unconscious or otherwise physically unable to resist. Further, you may be charged with unlawful sexual conduct, if the victim is under the age of 18, or you are the victim’s parent or guardian.

If the victim is under 14 years of age, and you are 3 years older, you may also be charged with this offense. Lastly, you may be charged with unlawful sexual conduct in Maine if the victim is age 14 or 15, and you are 10 years or older than them, or if you take advantage of a mentally disabled person to engage in a relationship with them when that person’s disability renders them unable to consent or understand the act.

Sexual conduct is also criminalized between a teacher older than 21 and a student younger than 18 who is enrolled in the same school or district as the teacher, and between a prisoner and jailer.

It is important to remember that you will face more serious penalties if you are accused of digital penetration.

Unlawful sexual touching

According to Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 17-A, § 260, you are guilty of committing unlawful sexual touching when you touch another’s breasts, buttocks, or groin for a sexual purpose under any of the conditions that would result in charges for unlawful sexual conduct.

Defense against gross sexual assault

Depending on the unique charges against you, there are a number of different defenses your attorney can use. For example, if you are charged with gross sexual assault on the basis that you drugged the victim, you could argue that the defendant consumed the intoxicant voluntarily.

If you are married to the victim, you could have a legitimate marital rape defense — you and the victim are married and the act in question was consensual. Ultimately, the defense tactics you use will rely on the specific details of your case.

Penalties for gross sexual assault in Maine

In Maine, gross sexual assault is a Class B crime, punishable by a maximum of 10 years’ imprisonment and up to $20,000 in fines.

Aggravated gross sexual assault is a Class A crime, punishable by a maximum of 30 years in prison and fines up to $50,000.

Gross sexual assault based on the relationship between certain individuals is a Class C crime, punishable by a maximum of five years in prison and fines of up to $5,000.

Typically, unlawful sexual conduct is a Class D crime punishable by a maximum of one year in prison and up to $2,000 in fines, so long as there is no digital penetration (if there is penetration, it becomes a Class C crime).

If there is penetration, unlawful sexual conduct by compulsion is a Class B crime and a Class C crime if no penetration occurs. In cases involving incest, or when the victim is younger than 14, unlawful sexual conduct is also penalized more harshly. If you are accused of unlawful sexual touching, you face class D crime penalties.

In the event that you are a school employee charged with sexual contact with a student in the same school or district, you may be charged with a Class E crime, penalized by up to six months in jail and up to $1,000 in fines.

Sex offender registry in Maine

Lastly, according to Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 34-A, § § 11273, 11282, 11285, under Maine’s latest iteration of the sex offender registration law, some (not all) individuals who are convicted of gross sexual assault and unlawful sexual contact must register as sex offenders for a minimum of 10 years.

Contact a Maine Sex Crime Lawyer Today

The Maine Criminal Defense Group fights doggedly to protect the rights of all those wrongfully charged with sex-related crimes.

We understand how troubling an accusation of sexual assault, sexual battery or gross sexual assault can be on you and your family.

To schedule a free consultation to discuss your case with a skilled defense lawyer, call (207) 571-8146 or contact us online today. Let our experienced legal team work aggressively to protect your rights and freedom.

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