A Sexual Assault Charge Can Get Tricky: Get an Experienced Lawyer to Work on Your Defence Today | Sexual Assault Lawyer Toronto
Sexual assault charges in Canada are taken very seriously. If you have been charged with one, it may feel like the whole world is closing in against you and that you are alone in what is about to become the fight of your life.
John Erickson is a senior criminal defence lawyer who has successfully defended numerous individuals charged with sexual assault offences for more than 20 years. With his proven track record of success, Erickson Law is a prudent choice for those seeking a sexual assault defence lawyer in Toronto.
Since sexual assault is a serious offence, let’s have a look at what the effects of a potential charge can mean for you and why it’s important to contact a lawyer as soon as possible.
Overview of Sexual Assault
To understand the effects on a person’s life, you must first understand what constitutes sexual assault. In Canada, the definition of sexual assault is very broad. Sexual assault is any non-consensual act that violates the sexual integrity of another person. This can include any unwanted touching, groping, kissing, fondling or rape.
According to Section 265 of the Criminal Code states that a person commits an “assault” when:
(a) without the consent of another person, he/she applies force intentionally to that other person, directly or indirectly;
(b) he/she attempts or threatens, by an act or gesture, to apply force to another person, if he/she has, or causes that other person to believe on reasonable grounds that he/she has, present ability to affect his/her purpose; or
(c) while openly wearing or carrying a weapon or an imitation thereof, he/she accosts or impedes another person or begs.
The Criminal Code defines consent as “the voluntary agreement of the complainant to engage in the sexual activity in question.” Consent cannot be given if a person is intoxicated or unconscious.
Types of Sexual Assault
There are three primary levels of sexual assault in the Criminal Code:
- Sexual Assault (s. 271): An assault committed in circumstances whereby the victim’s sexual integrity is violated. The maximum penalty is 10 years in jail. However, if the victim is under the age of 16 years, then the maximum sentence is 14 years in jail and the minimum sentence is one year in jail.
- Sexual Assault with a Weapon or Causing Bodily Harm (s. 272): Sexual assault with a weapon, causing bodily harm or where threats to a third party are used. The maximum sentence is 14 years in jail. However, if a firearm is used, then the maximum sentence is still 14 years but the minimum sentence will be 4 years in jail. However, if a firearm was used and the sexual assault was committed in relation to a criminal organization, then the minimum sentence will be 5 years for a first offence and 7 years for each subsequent offence.
- Aggravated Sexual Assault (s. 273): Aggravated sexual assault which results in wounding, maiming, disfiguring or endangering the victim’s life. The maximum sentence is life imprisonment. However, if a firearm is used, then the maximum sentence is still life imprisonment but the minimum sentence will be 4 years in jail. However, if a firearm was used and the sexual assault was committed in relation to a criminal organization, then the minimum sentence will be 5 years for a first offence and 7 years for each subsequent offence.
What Happens If I Am Charged?
If you are facing a sexual assault charge, the first step is to hire an experienced sexual assault lawyer who will immediately begin to gather as much information as possible about your accuser and the materials that the police and Crown will use to prosecute you.
Your lawyer will then carefully review all of the available material with you to advise you as to what courses of action need to be taken. Ultimately, it is the client’s choice on how to proceed.
At Erickson Law, we work closely with you to strengthen your defence, gather all the evidence that will assist you and prepare you for trial.
Strengthen Your Defence With a Trusted Criminal Lawyer
This is a trying time for you and your family. Even first-time offenders could possibly face jail time.
John Erickson is a senior criminal defence lawyer in Toronto who a tremendous amount of experience dealing with sexual assault-related charges. He is committed to client care and answers questions promptly and accurately.
John Erickson will work hard to carefully review the circumstances of your case and prepare you for trial. The Crown Attorney’s Office will prosecute your case vigorously. You need a lawyer who will work even harder for you.
Timely legal intervention is important for your case!
Contact Erickson now to present a winning defence in court.