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Sexual Assault and Battery

What is Sexual Assault?

Sexual assault generally refers to any crime in which the offender subjects the victim to sexual touching that is unwanted and offensive. These crimes can range from sexual groping to attempted or actual rape.
The California Penal Code is very specific about the illegal nature of sexual assault. The act is considered assault if it is “non-consensual,” in other words, “against the victim's will” – and that includes cases in which the assault victim is unable to give consent. In perpetrating sexual assault, the offender may use “means of force, violence, duress, menace, or fear of immediate and unlawful bodily injury on the victim or another person.” He/she may threaten “to retaliate in the future against the victim or any other person,” or “use the authority of a public official to incarcerate, arrest, or deport the victim or another.” The law protects children, minors and adults, as well as those “incapable, because of a mental disorder or developmental or physical disability, of giving legal consent.” The sexual assault laws also protect those who are unconscious or asleep, including victims of what’s known as “date rape.” Both women and men may be victims or offenders in cases of sexual assault. The law states, “Whether the accused is a stranger, acquaintance, spouse, or friend is irrelevant to the legal definition of rape.”

What is Sexual Battery?

As with sexual assault, the California Penal Code protects individuals against the intimate touching known as sexual battery. The touching must be “against the will of the person touched and...for the purpose of sexual arousal, sexualgratification, or sexual abuse.” According to the law, “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.” The victim of sexual battery may be a person who “is unlawfully restrained by the accused or an accomplice,” a “person who is institutionalized for medical treatment and who is seriously disabled or medically incapacitated,” a person who is fraudulently led to believe “that the touching served a professional purpose,” or an employee of the perpetrator, among other definitions.

Are you a victim of Sexual Assault or Sexual Battery?

If you have been raped, call 911 to report your rape to the police or go to your local emergency room and tell the nurse that you have been raped. If you believe that you have been a victim of sexual assault or sexual battery, whether by a family member, an acquaintance, a stranger or someone at your place of employment, you should talk with an experienced and empathic attorney. Shannon Foley can help you understand your rights and protections under the law and help you decide what actions make the most sense to help you immediately and to prevent others from being assaulted in the future.

Contact Foley Lyman Law Group LLP

If you are seeking legal counsel who will listen to your concerns, inform you of your options and represent you effectively, contact Foley Lyman Law Group at 310.706.4050 for a confidential consultation. You can also send us an email to obtain more information or schedule an appointment with one of our award winning employment and business lawyers.

We provide expert legal representation in all areas of Employment Law including Class Actions, Wrongful Termination, Workplace Discrimination for Age, Pregnancy, Gender, Sexual Orientation or Family Issues, Harassment at Work, Severance Negotiations as well as in Business Law, Transactional and Litigation in Los Angeles, Orange County and all of California.

Foley Lyman Law Group LLP
1500 Rosecrans Avenue
Suite 500
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
Office: (310) 706-4050
Fax: (310) 356-3105

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