First Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct in Michigan: What You Need to Know
First degree criminal sexual conduct is one of the gravest form of sexual offence you can be charged within Michigan. 1st degree CSC can involve either children or adults (depending upon the circumstance) and always contain some form of rape or sexual penetration. It also includes actions that most people might think of as child rape or child molestation, and sexual assault involving someone with a mental or physical disability.
Accusations of criminal sexual conduct popularly known as CSC, in Michigan are divided into four different degrees. With each degree having its own number of elements for which must be alleged before you can be charged for Michigan criminal sexual conduct. It is important you know that the age of the alleged victim is an important basis for charging you.
The significance of “Sexual Penetration”
The main difference between each of the four degrees is based on whether the allegation involves penetration or simply touching.While the inclusion of sexual penetration accusation gives rise to 1st or 3rd degree CSC charge, ‘Mere’ sexual contact allegation falls into the 2nd and 4th degree CSC.
Hence, you should know that sexual penetration can mean quite a number of things in Michigan. Beyond sexual intercourse, the Michigan Penal code considers the following to be sexual penetration;
- Oral sex performed on either a male or female.
- Anal Intercourse
- Insertion of an object into the genital or anal areas of another.
- Virtual penetration (finger into vagina) among others.
What does 1st degree CSC entail?
1st degree CSC is defined in different ways and several types of action may result from it. According to the MICHIGAN PENAL CODE S.750.520 (b), a person, whether male or female, can be charged with a crime of 1st degree CSC or CSC 1 if he or she engages in sexual penetration with a person who is under the age of 13; or if sexual penetration occurs in one of the ensuing circumstances;
- The other person is less than 16 years of age, but above 13 years of age, and the actor is a member of the same household as the other person.
- The actor is an employee or volunteer of a child care facility or licensed as a foster caregiver in which the victim resides.
- The actor is related to the victim by blood or is in an authoritative position over the victim as a result of which the victim submits.
- The actor is a teacher, substitute teacher, an employee, a state service provider, or a volunteer in the school district in which the victim is enrolled in.
- The sexual penetration occurs during the commission of another felony, such as kidnapping or robbery.
- The actor is armed with, or reasonably believed to be armed with, a weapon or uses force or coercion to sexually penetrate the victim and the victim is injured in the process.
- The actor knows, or should have known, that the victim is mentally incapable or incapacitated or physically helpless and the actor causes personal injury to the victim.
- The victim is mentally incapable or incapacitated or physically helpless and the actor and victim are related by blood or the actor is in a position of authority over the victim.
Punishment for a crime of 1st degree CSC
First degree CSC is the most serious among various degrees. If found guilty of it, you can be punished by Imprisonment for Life or any other term of years the court decides. The life imprisonment comes with a mandatory minimum sentence of 25 years or more if you as the defendant is 17 years old or more and your victim is below the age of 13.
Once convicted for 1st degree CSC, you will be slapped with a lifetime electronic monitoring sentence which allows the state keep track of your whereabouts and put your under a closer supervision. You will also have to register with the Michigan sex offender registry for life.
Get an attorney.
Once charged with a first degree CSC, especially if your victim is below the age of 13, you’re guilty in the court of public opinion. Hence, it is important to have an experienced Michigan sex crimes attorney to stand by you and protect your rights.
Getting one will avail you the chance of a person who can scrutinize evidence in rape cases, challenge expert testimony and tell your story.