The Most Common Defence For A Sexual Assault Charge
Sexual assault is defined as unwanted touching that is sexual in nature. Touching must be intentional and not accidental. There must be a lack of consent from the person being touched. Touching must be sexual in nature even if the intention of the accused is not for sexual gratification or pleasure.
There are several things that a judge may consider in a sexual assault like:
- The part of the body that was touched
- The nature of the contact
- The situation where the touching occurred
- Words and gestures that happened during the touching
- The reason why the accused did the touching
When making a decision, the judge will also consider whether the sexual integrity of the victim has been violated including the likely effects of the sexual assault and whether the victim felt demeaned. If the touching was done intentionally, the accused acted knowing that the victim has not given her consent to being touched sexually.
Generally, the age of consent for sexual activity is 16 years old but the age can increase to 18 years old if the sexual activity will involve prostitution and pornography and if the sexual activity happens in a relationship of trust, authority, and dependency like a teacher, coach or foster parent.
Defences for a sexual assault offense
One of the most common defences is honest belief in consent but the accused must have strong evidence that he honestly believes that the complainant consented to touching. The accused’s belief must be reasonable and he must have undertaken steps to ensure that the complainant consented to the sexual activity.
The defence of honest belief in consent will fail if the accused is too drunk or too high to ensure the complainant’s consent. If the accused did not ask for consent but merely assumed the consent, it is considered as wilful blindness. If the accused went ahead even if the complainant showed clear signs that she is not consenting, it means that no consent was given.
If you are charged with sexual assault, the best option is to call MyDefence.ca immediately so that the law firm can send a criminal defence lawyer who has experience in representing people charged with sexual assault.