What You Need to Know if You're Facing Sexual Assault Charges
More than any other criminal charge, there is a stigma attached to the charge of sexual assault. That means that even if you are never convicted, you are facing permanent damage to your reputation, your career and your family. Many people don’t fully understand what is sexual assault, as it covers such a broad range of acts.
The consequences of a conviction on sexual assault charges can be devastating. You need an expert sexual assault lawyer on your side today.
What is Sexual Assault?
The sexual assault definition describes unwanted touching or threatening of a sexual nature or for a sexual purpose. This is a broad description that can cover activities from groping to the sexual abuse of a child to non-consensual sexual intercourse.
To determine if an assault was sexual in nature (as opposed to assault, which is a separate offence), the court will look at the following factors:
- Which part of the body was touched?
- What was the nature of the touching?
- What were the circumstances surrounding the incident?
- What words or gestures accompanied the act?
You need a lawyer on your side to help you understand the nature of the charges you are facing and to help you assess your options.
The challenges of historical sexual assault charges
In Canada, the legal names, definitions and laws relating to sexual assault have changed several times over the years. In the past, Canadian laws used terms such as:
- Attempted rape
- Indecent assault
- Gross indecency.
These terms are still used today when sexual assault allegations of a historical nature are made. It is not unusual for sexual assault allegations to be made several years after the alleged incident.
Historical sexual assault charges can be particularly difficult to defend against. The memories of witnesses fade over time. Vital witnesses may have died, or disappeared. Physical evidence may have been destroyed.
These challenges require the skill and expertise of an experienced sexual assault lawyer. If you are facing a historical sexual assault charge, you need a lawyer on your side right away.
Protect your reputation
In Canada, the media tends to seize upon sexual assault cases with particular enthusiasm. In order to protect your reputation from potentially irreversible damage, it is vital that you contact a lawyer immediately if you are charged with sexual assault or are contacted by the police in connection with a sexual assault allegation.
You need expert advice on how to deal with the police and the media. While your lawyer will not be able to prevent the media from publishing any particular story, it may be possible to balance a story by presenting your side. You should never attempt to communicate with the media directly. It is far too easy for them to misquote you or present your story in a bad light.
When facing sexual assault charges, your best course of action is to let your attorney speak for you, both with the media and with the police.
What a sexual assault lawyer can do for you
In many cases of sexual assault, the only evidence is the testimony of the accused and the alleged victim. This is known as a “he said, she said” situation. These trials boil down to which person the judge and jury believe, or find more credible.
An experienced sexual assault attorney or lawyer will know:
- Not all sexual assault allegations are true. Your attorney will assess the credibility of the alleged victim
- How to best present your side of the story
- How to demonstrate your credibility to the court
- How to cross-examine the alleged victim to challenge their credibility and to bring out your side of the story.
You need these crucial skills if credibility is the only thing standing between you and a conviction. Maximize your credibility. Contact a sexual assault lawyer today.
Contact a lawyer as soon as possible
You need an expert on your side for the best possible outcome. If you are facing sexual assault charges, you must contact a seasoned sexual assault lawyer right away. The earlier you get a lawyer on your side, the more they will be able to do to protect your reputation and your freedom. Call a lawyer today!
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