According to New York law, aggravated sexual abuse in the third degree is a very serious felony sex crime. For this crime to have been committed, the following criteria must be met:
- The perpetrator inserted a foreign object into the anus, rectum, penis, urethra, or vagina of another person
- The victim was physically injured
- The act was committed through forcible compulsion, or
- The person was unconscious or otherwise physically helpless, or
- The person was under the age of 11, or
- The person was not capable of consenting due to a mental incapacity
Under New York statutes, third degree aggravated sexual abuse is considered a Class D felony. Convictions have a maximum prison sentence of 7 years. In addition, you’ll face other consequences. You will need to register as a sex offender for a minimum of 20 years. Many people have to register for the rest of their lives. They must comply with sex offender restrictions. A probation sentence is also possible.
Accusations of sexual offenses can have lasting negative impact, even if you aren’t convicted. Because of the seriousness of the crime, it’s essential that you contact a defense attorney immediately. Your attorney will go over the facts of the case, help you understand your options, and provide the best defense possible. The justice system is nearly impossible to navigate if you haven’t studied it extensively. Since lawyers have spent years studying the law and the courts, they’re best equipped to provide an ideal outcome.
Elements to Prove
There are four types of aggravated sexual abuse defined under New York law. All are felonies. First degree is the most severe, while fourth degree is the least severe. Third degree aggravated sexual abuse is the third most serious charge.
The prosecutor needs to prove that a foreign object was inserted into the anus, rectum, penis, urethra, or vagina of another person. They must also prove that the victim did not consent.
New York law does not outline a definition of “foreign object.” In cases in the past, judges have ruled that knives, sticks, and bottles are all foreign objects.
If the defendant inserted their finger, the charge would either become second degree aggravated sexual abuse or be reduced to fourth degree aggravated sexual abuse, depending on the circumstances.
Lack of Consent Defined
There are five outlined ways to show that a victim did not give consent. They vary slightly depending on whether there was physical injury.
Forcible compulsion is the first way. Any kind of force means that the other party did not consent. Physical force is covered here, but it’s not the only circumstance. Threatening the victim with death or physical injury also counts as force, whether you used a weapon or words. Threatening to kidnap the victim or the victim’s loved ones also counts as forcible compulsion.
Physical helplessness is the next way. The most common kind of physical helplessness is unconsciousness, but any other helplessness also counts. Even if you didn’t cause the helpless state, committing sexual acts with a helpless person is a crime. If you find someone passed out and violate them, you have committed a crime regardless of whether you caused them to pass out.
The third way is the victim’s age. Any sexual abuse case involving a victim under 11 years old becomes an aggravated case. Victims under 11 years old are not legally capable of consent, so you are guilty of the crime regardless of if force was used.
If the victim had a mental disability that kept them from understanding the situation, they could not give informed consent. Even if they initiate the sex act, you may still be convicted.
The last way is for the victim to be mentally incapacitated, generally through intoxicating substances. An intoxicated person does not have the mental capability to consent.