If you’ve been arrested for or charged with sexual battery, it’s absolutely crucial that you call a Cleveland sex crime defense attorney right now. We don’t have to tell you the lifelong consequences of a sexual battery conviction. Not only could you face lengthy prison time, but you’ll also lose your right to housing and employment in certain areas.
When you call our Cleveland sexual battery lawyers, we’ll do whatever it takes to protect your future. The Cuyahoga County criminal defense system relies on plea deals and prosecutorial pressure to keep the dockets clear. However, a plea deal may not be in your best interests.
While the legal system at large only lets 2–5% of cases go to trial, Patituce & Associates, LLC has tried more than 200 cases before a jury. Our trial attorneys leverage our experience, resources, and time to get our clients the best possible outcome—regardless of the effort it requires.
Call our Cleveland sexual battery lawyers today at 440-471-7784 to get the help you need for your case.
What Is Sexual Battery Under Ohio Law?
The definition of sexual battery is outlined in §2907.03 of the Ohio Revised Code, or ORC.
In general, sexual battery refers to the use of authority or coercion to solicit sex from a person who is a.) not married to the defendant and b.) of less powerful rank or position or in the care of the defendant. This includes most situations involving schools, mental health institutions, or religious institutions where the person is either a minor or in the care of the defendant.
The law itself specifies 13 situations that fall under sexual battery:
- Using coercion to prevent physical resistance to sexual conduct
- Knowingly having sex with someone who has impaired control or awareness of themselves
- Leading someone into sexual conduct when the alleged victim is unaware of it
- Sex under the pretense of being the alleged victim’s spouse
- Sex with a natural or adoptive child, stepchild, or person to whom the defendant is a custodian or guardian
- Sex with someone in the legal or medical custody of the defendant
- Sex with a student at a public school where the defendant is employed in a position of authority
- Sex with a minor enrolled at an institution of higher education where the defendant is employed in a position of authority
- Sex with a minor where the defendant is a coach, instructor, scout leader, or any position of “temporary or occasional” disciplinary control
- Sex with a patient as a mental health professional under the pretense that sexual conduct is necessary for treatment
- Sex with a person at a detention facility where the defendant is employed
- Sex with a minor who attends a religious institution where the defendant is a cleric*
- Sex with a minor where the defendant is a law enforcement officer and two years older than the minor
A cleric is defined under Ohio law as “a member of the clergy, rabbi, priest, Christian Science practitioner, or regularly ordained, accredited, or licensed minister of an established and legally cognizable church, denomination, or sect.”
Despite the specificity of these 13 situations, relationships between consenting adults can be complicated by the circumstances. Juries understand that relationships may not always be black-and-white under the law.
As Cleveland sexual battery lawyers and former prosecutors, it’s our job to identify weaknesses in the prosecution’s case, presenting you with the best possible chance for dismissed charges or acquittal by the jury.
What Are the Penalties for Sexual Battery in Ohio?
In most cases, sexual battery is a third-degree felony. However, if the alleged victim is under 13 years old, the prosecutor will issue a second-degree felony charge, which comes with a mandatory minimum prison sentence. Conviction will also require registration with the Sex Offender Registration and Notification unit, or SORN.
Sexual battery conviction can result in the following penalties:
- 3rd-degree felony: 9–36 months of prison and a $10,000 fine
- 2nd-degree felony: 2–8 years of prison and a $15,000 fine
- 2nd-degree felony with prior convictions: 12–18 years of prison and a $15,000 fine
If you are convicted of sexual battery, you’ll be labeled a sex offender. If you’re convicted of sexual battery against a minor, you’ll be labeled a child-victim offender, which comes with even worse penalties. Under the Tier 3 SORN category, sexual battery means defendants are required to register every 90 days for the rest of their lives.
It is of the utmost importance that you get the help of an experienced and trusted Cleveland sexual battery lawyer. Call the offices of Patituce & Associates to schedule a free consultation today.
Call Our Cleveland Sexual Battery Lawyers for a Free, Confidential Consultation
Our Cleveland sexual battery attorneys won’t let you face these charges alone. The rest of your life hinges on the outcome of your case, so you need a criminal defense attorney who knows how to try cases and protect you in the court of public opinion.
We at Patituce & Associates have handled high-profile, high-stakes cases before, advocating for our clients in ways they didn’t realize were possible. Let us fight for you. Call 440-471-7784 or contact us online to start a free, confidential consultation today.