CA Penal Code 243.4 punishes the crime of Sexual Battery, or sometimes referred to as “Sexual Assault”. The California sexual battery defense attorneys from the Law Offices of Pereira & Moffatt are very experienced in defending against Sexual Battery charges in our Southern California courts.
PC 243.4 is known as a “wobbler”, or a law that the prosecutor can choose to charge as a misdemeanor or a felony. The prosecutor will base that decision on the circumstances of your case. If the alleged victim was mentally or physically incapacitated, mentally disabled, physically restrained, or unconscious at the time the battery took place, the prosecutor can charge you with a misdemeanor or felony depending on the circumstances of your case. 243.4(e)(1), where the sexual battery takes place without consent of the alleged victim and there is no restraint or physical/mental condition, is charged as a misdemeanor.
Elements of the Crime – PC 243.4 Sexual Battery
In order to be convicted of PC 243.4, the prosecutor must be able to prove that you:
What is “Touched the intimate part of another person”?
A “touch” is a physical touching. A felony 243.4 Sexual Battery charge will require a touching of the alleged victim’s bare skin, which can be done with your own bare skin or through your clothes.
For example, if you were at a bar, and rubbed a girl’s butt through her dress, it would be a misdemeanor Sexual Battery. If you lifted up her skirt and rubbed her bare butt, it would be a felony Sexual Battery, because you rubbed her bare skin. If you lifted her skirt and rubbed her bare butt with your pants, it would still be charged as a felony even though you “touched” her bare skin with your pants only.
An “intimate part of another person” is what our common sense tells us are “private parts”. A female’s breasts, the butt of a man or woman, or the sexual organs of a man or woman are “intimate parts”.
What is “consent” and how can it be “fraudulently obtained”?
Consent is given when someone freely and voluntarily agrees to something, and understands the nature of what he/she is agreeing to. A sexual battery occurs when you touch another person in a sexual manner and that person does not want to be touched, or cannot consent to being touched. A person who is unconscious or is not mentally capable of understanding the sexual nature of the touching cannot “consent”.
“Fraudulently obtained” consent typically occurs in cases where the defendant is a doctor and the alleged victim was a patient of that doctor. If a general practice physician convinces a female patient that he must touch her vagina for purposes of medical treatment, and that touching is not actually medically necessary, the doctor may be charged with a Sexual Battery.
What is “sexual arousal, gratification, or abuse”?
“Arousal and “Gratification” refer to a battery committed for the purposes of sexual pleasure. “Abuse” may refer to a battery of another person’s “intimate part” done to either harm or humiliate that person.
How can the criminal defense attorneys from the Law Offices of Pereira & Moffatt fight my PC 243.4 Sexual Battery charge?
Our experienced criminal defense attorneys have several ways to fight a PC 243.4 Sexual Battery charge in our Southern California courts. Some of the ways we fight your PC 243.4 Sexual Battery charges are:
What sort of penalties am I facing if convicted of 243.4 Sexual Battery?
Remember, Penal Code 243.4 Sexual Battery is a “wobbler”. If convicted of misdemeanor 243.4, you may face the following penalties:
If convicted of felony 243.4 Sexual Battery, you may face the following penalties: