Yesterday, We began discussing some realities of Massachusetts sexual assault prosecution about which you may not be aware.
In this case, what you don’t know can ruin your life. I have seen it happen time and again.
Once the allegation is made, getting an experienced criminal defense attorney is your one best option to fix your life…but there will be damage nonetheless. So, it is worth taking the time to realize this reality now.
Better to not need my help.
Attorney Sam’s Take The New Realities of Sexual Assault Prosecutions
We discussed the new understanding of what constitutes a “no”…particularly if you want to be safe in avoiding criminal prosecution. There are some instances in which even a “yes” is not good enough to overcome an assumption of “no”.
For example, lets say that Peter Partier is at a party where he meets Adorable Annie. Both of them have had a few drinks and they hit it off. Annie is clearly pretty loaded, but Peter is pretty buzzed too. He walks her to her apartment (or dorm room) and begins to make “the moves” on her. She responds affirmatively and they have sex.
In the morning, Annie seems a bit embarrassed, but still friendly and they agree they will get together again later in the week. Peter leaves, perhaps figuring he has a new “girlfriend”. He is wrong. He may have a new “victim”.
I have seen this scenario play out many times where Annie’s friends explain to her that, because she was drunk, she was raped. I have seen other rationales as well, such has having to explain to a boyfriend, or a simple remorseful feeling of “That’s not me!”
“Well, that’s ridiculous, Sam! She cannot simply claim that after the fact! “
No? Why not? Few rapes are reported before the fact.
“You know what I mean. She never indicated, or even thought, that she did not want to consent to sex”.
True. However, she may have been drunk. Under the law, if she were drunk, she could not, as a matter of law, have consented. Its like saying an infant can consent to sex.
“But Peter was buzzed too!”
Yes, but Peter is not claiming he was raped. Annie is. Remember something we have spoken about in the past many times. Often, the difference between who will be the “victim” and who will be the defendant is in who makes the complaint first.
Besides, there is an obvious presumption that the male is the aggressor.
Again, maybe Peter will win at trial. But what I am trying to do here is to avoid that harrowing adventure for him.
I mentioned that this could have taken place in a dormitory room. This brings us to the fact that many of these cases take place in schools. For a student to be facing such allegations, the prosecution, or even the allegation is never prosecuted by law enforcing, it is twice as devastating.
“Why is that?”