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Sexual Battery: California Penal Code 243.4

Sexual Battery (CA Penal Code 243.4 PC) is the California law that prohibits the touching of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification, arousal, or abuse. Unlike rape charges, sexual battery does not require that you engage in sexual intercourse, and you can be charged with sexual battery even if you and the victim are in a sexual relationship.

Penal Code 234.4 PC also applies to more severe forms of sexual battery, these type of battery occurs when the victim is unlawfully restrained, seriously disabled, medically incapacitated, or if the victim believed that the touching was for professional purposes, such as a doctor's visit. When these factors are part of the crime, sexual battery is usually charged as a felony.

Sexual Battery is a very serious offense, and if convicted under it, you will be required to register as a sex offender for the rest of your life. Depending on the nature of the crime and if there was force used to commit the crime, sexual battery may be charges as either a Misdemeanor or a Felony. Below we will go into detail on each one.

Misdemeanor Sexual Battery

Sexual Battery is charged as a misdemeanor if the crime includes the touching of another person's intimate parts against their will, and for purposes of sexual gratification, arousal, or abuse. If there are no more factors in the crime then it will be charged as a misdemeanor.

If you are convicted of a misdemeanor sexual battery crime you will face up to six months in a county jail, fines of up to $2,000, summary probation for up to five years, and you will be required to annually register as a sex offender.

Felony Sexual Battery

In order for Sexual Battery to be charged as a Felony, you must not only meet the factors that apply to a misdemeanor sexual battery charge, but you must also commit one of the more severe forms of sexual battery, this happens if the victim was unlawfully restrained, seriously disabled, medically incapacitated, or if the victim believed that the touching was for professional purposes.

If you are convicted of a sexual battery felony you will face up to four years in a state prison, and up to an additional five years if the victim sustained a great injury, a fine of up to $10,000, formal probation, and you will be required to register as a sex offender.

Attorney David Chesley along with the other expert attorneys working at the Law Offices of David S. Chesley have helped many clients prove their innocence after they were falsely accused. Some legal defenses we have used to help our clients are:

Consent, if the touching is consensual, or if you had reason to believe that it was consensual you cannot be convicted. For example if the accused fondled the victim's breast after a date and the victim was not comfortable with this, but did not clearly express this to the accused, he can't be found guilty.

False Accusation, feelings that arise out of jealousy or anger can lead to false accusations. Maybe your ex-wife accused you to influence your child custody dispute. False accusation happen often in sex crimes, but especially when it comes to sexual battery, because sexual battery allegations do not require any physical injury.

Insufficient Evidence, the prosecutor is required to show that sexual battery occurred, without enough evidence, this is a very difficult task. Usually when false accusations happen there is a lack of evidence, an experienced attorney may be able to get the charges reduced or dismissed without ever taking the case to trial.

If you or a loved one have been accused of a sex crime, contact the Law Offices of David Chesley. We offer a free initial consultation and have legal professionals waiting to speak with you.

CA Penal Code 243.4

243.4.  (a) Any person who touches an intimate part of another
person while that person is unlawfully restrained by the accused or
an accomplice, and if the touching is against the will of the person
touched and is for the purpose of sexual arousal, sexual
gratification, or sexual abuse, is guilty of sexual battery. A
violation of this subdivision is punishable by imprisonment in a
county jail for not more than one year, and by a fine not exceeding
two thousand dollars ($2,000); or by imprisonment in the state prison
for two, three, or four years, and by a fine not exceeding ten
thousand dollars ($10,000).
   (b) Any person who touches an intimate part of another person who
is institutionalized for medical treatment and who is seriously
disabled or medically incapacitated, if the touching is against the
will of the person touched, and if the touching is for the purpose of
sexual arousal, sexual gratification, or sexual abuse, is guilty of
sexual battery. A violation of this subdivision is punishable by
imprisonment in a county jail for not more than one year, and by a
fine not exceeding two thousand dollars ($2,000); or by imprisonment
in the state prison for two, three, or four years, and by a fine not
exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000).
   (c) Any person who touches an intimate part of another person for
the purpose of sexual arousal, sexual gratification, or sexual abuse,
and the victim is at the time unconscious of the nature of the act
because the perpetrator fraudulently represented that the touching
served a professional purpose, is guilty of sexual battery. A
violation of this subdivision is punishable by imprisonment in a
county jail for not more than one year, and by a fine not exceeding
two thousand dollars ($2,000); or by imprisonment in the state prison
for two, three, or four years, and by a fine not exceeding ten
thousand dollars ($10,000).
   (d) Any person who, for the purpose of sexual arousal, sexual
gratification, or sexual abuse, causes another, against that person's
will while that person is unlawfully restrained either by the
accused or an accomplice, or is institutionalized for medical
treatment and is seriously disabled or medically incapacitated, to
masturbate or touch an intimate part of either of those persons or a
third person, is guilty of sexual battery. A violation of this
subdivision is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail for not
more than one year, and by a fine not exceeding two thousand dollars
($2,000); or by imprisonment in the state prison for two, three, or
four years, and by a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars
($10,000).
   (e) (1) Any person who touches an intimate part of another person,
if the touching is against the will of the person touched, and is
for the specific purpose of sexual arousal, sexual gratification, or
sexual abuse, is guilty of misdemeanor sexual battery, punishable by
a fine not exceeding two thousand dollars ($2,000), or by
imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding six months, or by both
that fine and imprisonment. However, if the defendant was an employer
and the victim was an employee of the defendant, the misdemeanor
sexual battery shall be punishable by a fine not exceeding three
thousand dollars ($3,000), by imprisonment in a county jail not
exceeding six months, or by both that fine and imprisonment.
Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any amount of a fine
above two thousand dollars ($2,000) which is collected from a
defendant for a violation of this subdivision shall be transmitted to
the State Treasury and, upon appropriation by the Legislature,
distributed to the Department of Fair Employment and Housing for the
purpose of enforcement of the California Fair Employment and Housing
Act (Part 2.8 (commencing with Section 12900) of Division 3 of Title
2 of the Government Code), including, but not limited to, laws that
proscribe sexual harassment in places of employment. However, in no
event shall an amount over two thousand dollars ($2,000) be
transmitted to the State Treasury until all fines, including any
restitution fines that may have been imposed upon the defendant, have
been paid in full.
   (2) As used in this subdivision, "touches" means physical contact
with another person, whether accomplished directly, through the
clothing of the person committing the offense, or through the
clothing of the victim.
   (f) As used in subdivisions (a), (b), (c), and (d), "touches"
means physical contact with the skin of another person whether
accomplished directly or through the clothing of the person
committing the offense.
   (g) As used in this section, the following terms have the
following meanings:
   (1) "Intimate part" means the sexual organ, anus, groin, or
buttocks of any person, and the breast of a female.
   (2) "Sexual battery" does not include the crimes defined in
Section 261 or 289.
   (3) "Seriously disabled" means a person with severe physical or
sensory disabilities.
   (4) "Medically incapacitated" means a person who is incapacitated
as a result of prescribed sedatives, anesthesia, or other medication.
   (5) "Institutionalized" means a person who is located voluntarily
or involuntarily in a hospital, medical treatment facility, nursing
home, acute care facility, or mental hospital.
   (6) "Minor" means a person under 18 years of age.
   (h) This section shall not be construed to limit or prevent
prosecution under any other law which also proscribes a course of
conduct that also is proscribed by this section.
   (i) In the case of a felony conviction for a violation of this
section, the fact that the defendant was an employer and the victim
was an employee of the defendant shall be a factor in aggravation in
sentencing.
   (j) A person who commits a violation of subdivision (a), (b), (c),
or (d) against a minor when the person has a prior felony conviction
for a violation of this section shall be guilty of a felony,
punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for two, three, or
four years and a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000).

 

 

 

 

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Office Locations

Main Office:
Law Offices of David S. Chesley, Inc.
A Professional Law Corporation
4533 Van Nuys Boulevard, Second Floor
Sherman Oaks, CA 91403

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