What is Sodomy 1st Degree?
In the past, sodomy laws were created to focus on the actions of gay men since, in the past, homosexuality was viewed as unnatural and perverse. However, since what is and isn’t socially acceptable has changed significantly, so have the laws.
Due to the changes that have occurred in society, Michigan’s law has created new wording for the sodomy statute. Today, it is called “crimes against nature.”
How Does Michigan Law Define Sodomy?
Sodomy is a criminal offense that includes sexual intercourse with another person or animal that is considered “detestable” or “abominable.”
There are two main parts to this law:
Crime Against Nature with Another Person
This is the original part of this law. Today, it is mostly unenforceable since the Supreme Court’s ruling related to anti–sodomy laws. However, this only applies in situations where those involved are consenting adults.
Crime Against Nature with an Animal
The second part of this law includes bestiality. This is when a person commits some type of sexual act with an animal.
What is Sodomy 1st Degree?
In the following situations, you may be charged with sodomy in the first degree. Additionally, no suspended sentence will be granted in these situations. They include:
A person commits sodomy if they engage in deviate sexual intercourse with a person incapable of consent, incapacitated, cannot consent, or because of forcible compulsion.
Forcible compulsion includes administering a substance without the victim knowing or consenting to it, resulting in their mental or physical impairment to the point they cannot make informed consent regarding sexual intercourse (see: date rape charges).
The penalties can be severe if you are charged with and convicted of sodomy in the first degree that involves forcible compulsion to engage in sexual intercourse. This is a felony charge that can result in a prison sentence of five years, and can go up to life in prison, unless:
- You face aggravated charges, which increases the prison sentence to 10 years to life
- You are found to be a predatory sexual offender, which can result in an extended prison sentence
- The victim is a child under 12; in this case, you face life in prison with no potential for parole or probation until at least 30 years of the sentence is served or if you reach age 75 and have served a minimum of 15 years of your sentence
- You commit sexual intercourse with another person who is under 12, and you attempt to commit or commit sodomy in the first degree that involved horrible, inhumane, or wantonly vile actions, including depravity of mind or torture, including serious physical injury; in which case, the penalty is life in prison with no eligibility of parole, conditional release, or probation
Additional Consequences of Sodomy in the First Degree
If you are convicted of sodomy in the first degree, involving deviate sexual intercourse or serious physical injury during sexual intercourse with another person, you may face other consequences, too.
For example, many sex crimes require you to register on the Public Sex Offender Registry. The time period you must be registered is determined by the crime you are convicted of. The more serious the crime, the longer you will have to be registered as a sexual offender.
If you are placed on the public registry, it can have a negative impact on your life in many ways. For example, you may lose your current job, find it difficult to secure future employment, be unable to live in certain places, lose access to certain government programs, and it may even impact your right to have custody of your children.
If you face sodomy in the first degree charges, you must take them seriously. These cases involve sexual intercourse with another person, which can result in serious penalties if you are convicted.
You may face a lengthy period of incarceration and must register as a sexual offender. Additionally, if the court determines that deviate sexual intercourse or forcible compulsion were involved, or if you are considered sexually delinquent, you may face even more severe penalties.
Due to this, you must make sure you have experienced sexual assault lawyers on your side when facing sodomy in the first degree charges in Michigan. A criminal defense attorney will be able to gather evidence related to your case and help you build a solid defense for the charges against you.
Some of the potential sexual assault defense strategies against these charges include:
- Consent: It is illegal for everyone, even adults, to engage in sodomy. However, the law is not enforceable due to the Supreme Court ruling. You cannot face criminal charges if you engaged in sodomy and can prove the other party consented. The exception is if the sexual penetration occurred with a minor.
- Not a Minor: You can not be charged with sodomy in the first degree if you engaged in a sexual act with someone you reasonably believed was not a minor. This includes situations where the person lies about their age or seems physically mature.
- False Accusation: Sometimes, someone may accuse you of deviate sexual intercourse as revenge or to “get back” at you. If you are falsely accused, it can be used as a defense.
Hire a Sex Crimes Attorney to Help with Your Sodomy in the First Degree Charges
When you are charged with sodomy in the first degree, taking the charges seriously is important. The penalties you may face are not just serious, but can impact yours and your family’s life in many ways.
If you are facing sodomy in the first degree charges, immediately contact Attorney Nicole Blank Becker at Blank Law, PC. You can schedule a Michigan criminal defense attorney free consultation by calling the office at (248) 515-6583, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Hiring a sex crimes defense lawyer quickly after being arrested and charged will give them the time needed to build a solid criminal sexual conduct defense for your case. It is best to find an attorney who specializes in sex crimes, like Nicole Blank Becker, to ensure you have the best defense possible for your situation.