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Aug 1, 2019

Maine Woman Charged as Accomplice to Sex Assault of Child

Two Mainers are facing charges of raping a minor in an incident that apparently involved a child under the age of 12. One of the adults charged faces criminal charges as an accomplice to the sex offense. Those charges are a stark example of how people can be charged with multiple sex crimes without ever touching the alleged victim.

Sex Crime Charges Against Two Mainers in Incident Involving a Child

Details on the case are sketchy, but news reports indicate that an unrelated man from Bethel and a woman from Sabattus, Maine, are being accused of a handful of sex crimes for an incident in Rumford involving a girl under 12.

Evidence from the incident is reportedly being turned over to the Maine State Police Computer Crimes Task Force. This suggests that either someone had taken pictures or video of the incident or arrangements had been made between the defendants and the minor online.

The man is facing the following criminal charges:

  • Two counts of gross sexual assault
  • Sexual misconduct with a child
  • Sexual exploitation of a minor
  • Patronizing the prostitution of a minor.

The woman is being charged with:

  • Accomplice liability to a gross sexual assault
  • Sexual exploitation of a minor
  • Aggravated sex trafficking.

How Accomplice Charges Can Work in Sex Crime Cases

Accomplice liability is a complicated aspect of criminal law in Maine. Accomplices can, quite literally, be convicted of criminal charges for things that they did not actually do. All that accomplices have to do is be legally accountable for the conduct of the other person charged with the crime or facilitate the crime’s commission.

17-A Maine Statute § 57 is the law that lays out how someone can become an accomplice to a crime or be legally accountable for the criminal conduct of someone else.

Based on the accomplice statute and the particular sex crimes that have been charged, it is possible to speculate about the details of the situation and how the woman is being charged at all. The single charge of aggravated sex trafficking – likely under 17-A Maine Statute § 852(1)(B) for promoting the prostitution of a minor – suggests that the woman set up or somehow facilitated the meeting between the man being charged and the girl. This could have happened in a number of ways, including:

  • Arranging for the meeting between the two online;
  • Driving the girl to the meeting place; or
  • Owning the property where the two met and knowing what was going on.

Needless to say, none of these courses of conduct involve anything sexual. Nevertheless, because they could have in some way facilitated gross sexual assault, she is being charged as an accomplice to the underlying assault accusation.

Sex Crime Defense Lawyers at Maine Criminal Defense Group in Maine

The criminal defense lawyers at Maine Criminal Defense Group serve those accused of sex crimes – including anyone accused of being an accomplice to a sex crime – in Portland, Saco, Biddeford, or the surrounding region. Contact us online or call our law office at (207) 571-8146 for the legal help you need.

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