Third Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct In Michigan: What You Need To Know
Yes, sex is good. In fact, it is part of what makes us human. But then, inordinate sexual desires or violent manifestation of such is bad and illegal. Apart from the societal norms and values that would have been broken, it will equally translate to psychological imbalance which the victim might not be able to recover from. Hence, certain criminal conducts are prohibited under the Michigan Criminal Justice System. These acts are legally termed ‘criminal sexual conduct.’ They exist in four degrees. The primary distinguishing factor among these degrees of criminal sexual conduct is the age of actor or the victim. In line with goal of this piece, criminal sexual conduct will be examined and with particular focus on what needs to be known as regards acts that constitutes 3rd Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct.
What is Criminal Sexual Conduct in Michigan?
Under the Michigan criminal legal system, ‘criminal sexual conduct’ is the legal term for rape, sexual assault and sexual battery. The relevant law in this regard is the Michigan Penal Code Act 328 of 1931. There are four degrees of Criminal Sexual Conduct in Michigan. These conducts consist of illicit sexual contact and levels of force or intimidation or coercion. Commendably, the law is gender neutral. Marital rape has also been criminalized in Michigan since 1998.
What then is 3rd Degree Criminal Conduct in Michigan?
3rd Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct in Michigan is one of the classification of illegal sexual activities. It is provided for under section 750.520d of the Michigan Penal Code. It is quite similar to second degree criminal conduct but it is less severe. According to section 750.250D (2) of the Michigan Penal Code, Criminal Sexual Conduct in the second degree is a felony that is punishable by a jail term of not more than fifteen years. An allegation of first degree criminal sexual conduct that includes sexual penetration but does not fit still fit into the first degree could fit into the third degree criminal sexual conduct and the accused can be charged for same, provided other elements that constitutes 3rd degree criminal sexual conduct are also present.
What Constitutes 3rd Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct in Michigan?
According to section 750.520d of the Michigan Penal Code, third degree criminal conduct is a felony that is punishable by imprisonment for not more than 15 years. A person can be guilty of in any of these instances:
If the victim is within 13 – 16 years old, if coercion is employed in carrying out the sexual penetration, if the accused knows or has reason to know about the victim’s mental incapacity or physically helpless state, if the victim is related to the actor by blood or affinity up to the third degree and the sexual penetration occurs under prohibited circumstances.
It could also occur if the victim is within 16 – 18 years of age and a student in a public school or nonpublic school and then any of these happens: when the actor is a teacher or a related substitute of that same school of the victim. However, this would not apply if either of the victim or accused is emancipated, perhaps both persons are legal spouses to each other at the time of the alleged violation. Also, it could occur if the accused is an employee (or a related substitute) in a public school or its equivalent where the victim is enrolled and the accused gained access through this means.
Another instance is if the victim is within 16 – 26 years of age and is receiving special education services in any of the following circumstances: when the accused is teacher or its equivalent (as contained on the penal code) in the same school where the victim receives the special education services. Meanwhile, this would be inapplicable if both persons are lawfully married to each other at the time of the alleged violation.
Likewise, it could occur if the accused is not a student of any school but a volunteer or employer of the states assigned in providing any service to that school and the accused employs this means to establish the sexual relations with the victim; if the actor is employee or volunteer of a child care organization or a close substitute as contained in the Penal Code in which the victim is a resident, and the victim is at least 16 years of age, and the sexual penetration occurs during the victim’s period of residency.
Punishment for 3rd Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct in Michigan
The consequences third degree criminal sexual conduct in Michigan can have serious life-effects on the accused. Upon a successful conviction of 3rd degree CSC in Michigan, the actor can be sentenced to up to 15 years jail term, become permanently recorded as a sex offender, open to series of high criminal fines and court costs, bio data of the accused and details of the criminal offence get listed in public database – this can have negative social consequences, restriction from getting employed or living in certain places, it could also result in loss of employment or proscription from getting license to practice certain professions like nursing, law among others, it may result in loss of child custody at present and in future, the immigration status of the accused could equally suffer a setback and he or she might be deported back to his or her native country if he is not a citizen of U.S.
What to do?
It is by default expected that one should dutifully avoid committing crimes, let alone sexually related ones. At least, if not for anything but for the sake of avoiding the stiff punishments that can come with the conviction. An allegation of third degree sexual conduct could truthful or otherwise. Nevertheless, if it however happens that one is faced with a charge of 3rd degree sexual criminal conduct, it is best for the accused person to get a competent defense attorney in that field.