11 Feb What to expect if charged with Indecent assault and battery in Massachusetts and other sex crimes
Indecent assault and battery is a touching of another person in an area which
is deemed fundamentally offensive when viewed by contemporary standards, and it must be without consent or justification. This generally
includes areas of the buttocks, breasts and crotch and by definition any
fundamentally offensive touching when viewed through contemporary standards.
Indecent assault and battery on a person under 14 is the same charge
without the issue of consent being a factor. Indecent assault and battery on a child under 14 is taken very seriously since a child is involved and a person can face up to 2 1/2 years in the house of corrections or up to five years in the department of corrections.
Conviction for indecent assault and battery requires a person to register as a
sex offender with the sex offender registry board. Which carries potential registration on an online datatbase which for certain level sex offenders is available to be viewed by the public.
A sexual assault charge can reach the court in different ways. A person can be arrested and brought to court for arraignment, which is the formal reading of the charge in open court and where bail is decided by the judge along with any conditions of release to assure the safety of the alleged victim and make sure the accused returns to court. GPS bracelets are often ordered to restrict where a person can go. If the charge involved a minor certain GPS safety zones are created such as schools or playgrounds to ensure the person stays away from all minors.
Another way a sexual assault charge may be brought is through a clerk magistrate hearing. A person may receive notice in the mail to appear for a clerk magistrate hearing related to an accusation of sexual assault. You should bring an experienced sexual assault attorney with you to the clerk magistrate hearing. A clerk at these hearings either hears from a person who is accusing you of indecent assault and battery or may hear from a detective who reads from a police report which summarizes the accusations. You have an opportunity to tell your side. Be very careful you will be placed under oath and anything you say can be used against you in future proceedings. It is important to have a criminal attorney speak on your behalf. The standard of proof to charge someone is probable cause, it is not a trial. The clerk has to just hear an accusation which can form probable cause to charge you with a crime. One person’s accusation whether false or not can form the basis of a sexual assault charge and be enough to have a case issued against you.
Some of the other more common sexual assault crimes that can be charged in Massachusetts are rape, aggravated rape, Open and gross lewdness, possession of child pornography, distribution of child pornography, distribution of offensive material to a minor and indecent exposure.
If you are charged in Boston or anywhere in Massachusetts with indecent assault
and battery it is important to call a Boston criminal attorney with experience
in representing people on sexual assault charges. Attorney Frank Fernandez can
advise you as to what you can expect when you go to court or after being arrested or summonsed to a clerk magistrate hearing for sexual assault offense. It is important to have a criminal attorney with you to fight for your rights and to
make sure that you are treated fairly. You need someone with experience when the court is attempting to impose bail and restrictive conditions of release.
For free consultation related to sexual assault and indecent assault charges
feel free to call an experienced Boston criminal lawyer at 617-393-0250.