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The Penalties for Aggravated Sexual Assault o...

The Penalties for Aggravated Sexual Assault o...

Sexual crimes and crimes against children often have higher penalties than other crimes. For instance, sexual assault is a much more serious offense than simple assault, and it carries higher penalties. Thus, it follows that sexual offenses committed against children carry quite severe penalties in California. To understand the potential penalties in your specific case, contact the Ventura sex crime defense lawyers at the Law Offices of Bamieh and Erickson today. Read on to learn more about the potential penalties for sexual assault of a child. CA Laws for Sexual Assault against Child Victims In California, there is no crime formally called “sexual assault,” but there are related offenses. The crime of sexually touching another person is referred to as “sexual battery.” In California, the terms assault and battery are related, but assault actually refers to the attempt to touch another person, while battery refers to the contact itself. The term “sexual assault” is also commonly used to discuss rape offenses in terms that seem less harsh. However, California law refers to that crime as “rape,” not sexual assault. The other major crime related to sexual assault is the crime found in Penal Code § 288. The section of the Code containing § 288 is Title 9, which contains “Crimes Against the Person Involving Sexual Assault, and Crimes Against Public Decency and Good Morals.” This section of the code contains laws against traditionally amoral conduct, such as bigamy and incest, but it also contains the statute outlawing any “lewd or lascivious act … upon or with the body, or any part or member thereof, of a child.” This crime...
Can Workplace Sexual Harassment Become a Crim...

Can Workplace Sexual Harassment Become a Crim...

Sexual harassment, lewd comments, and suggestive actions in the workplace are usually inappropriate, but they are not always illegal. In the past few years, society has begun to crack down on workplace sexual harassment, and more and more cases are reported publicly. Many of these cases involve things that are rude or violative, but some may also include behavior that is illegal and constitutes a criminal offense. If you were charged with or accused of harassment in the workplace, consider talking to one of our Ventura, CA sexual assault lawyers at the Law Offices of Bamieh and Erickson today. Read on to learn more about when sexual harassment at work can become a full-fledged crime. Is Sexual Harassment a Crime? Many terms are used in the news and in popular discourse to discuss wrongful actions of a sexual nature. Clear terms like “rape” even have difficult definitions, since each state’s definition of the term might change. However, “sexual harassment” is a relatively clear term that makes it distinct from things like “sexual assault” or “workplace misconduct.” Workplace misconduct has become a common name for sexual harassment and other wrongful sex-related conduct in the workplace, but this term is broad and could conceivably cover more than just sex-related harassment. In contrast, “sexual assault” is a harsher term that usually refers to touching or attacking someone in a sexual way. The far end of the spectrum with these terms is rape, which, in California, is the crime of sexually penetrating someone without consent. Sexual harassment generally refers to suggestive or rude comments and actions that involve unwanted sexual advances. This term...
How Long Can the Adoption Process Take in Cal...

How Long Can the Adoption Process Take in Cal...

Adopting a child is one of the biggest commitments you can enter into under California law, and so it makes sense that the law puts rules and processes in place to avoid quick decisions and to vet potential adoptive parents. The process for adopting can take a long time, especially if you are planning to adopt a child from another state or from another country. If you need help with your adoption case or more information about how long the process will take and what steps you will need to take to adopt, call the Ventura adoption lawyers at the Law Offices of Bamieh and Erickson today to schedule a free legal consultation. The Steps to Adopt in California The adoption process requires multiple rounds of investigation and certification to ensure that you are fit to be a parent. In many cases, the State of California will guide you through the process, but working with an attorney can help you further. Social workers and judges are not your advocates, but an adoption attorney represents you and can fight to help you finalize your adoption and bring your child home. Our attorneys are available for help with individual adoption, adoption for same-sex couples, and other adoption cases. During this process, you should expect to go through the following steps, each of which takes some time to complete: Arranging the Adoption If you are working with an agency, the agency will handle much of the arrangement and matching by helping you find a child to adopt. If you are planning on seeking a child from another state or adopting a child...
Can Sexual Assault Charges Be a Misdemeanor i...

Can Sexual Assault Charges Be a Misdemeanor i...

Many crimes in California can be classified as either a “felony” or a “misdemeanor” depending on details of the crime and how it is committed. Sexual assault, which can be charged under multiple different statutes, is one of these offenses. In some cases, sexual assault can be a misdemeanor offense, but in others, it can be a much more serious felony offense. For help with your sexual assault case, contact the Ventura rape defense lawyers at the Law Offices of Bamieh and Erickson today. Rape vs. Sexual Assault in California To understand whether sexual assault can be a misdemeanor, we must first look at which crimes qualify as “sexual assault.” The term “sexual assault” is a common name for rape and other related sexual offenses in California. The most common offenses labeled “sexual assault” are rape under Penal Code § 261 and sexual battery under Penal Code § 243.4. Sexual battery is the crime most likely to be called “sexual assault,” since assault and battery are related offenses. This crime makes it illegal to touch someone sexually under certain circumstances, covering illegal sexual conduct that is short of rape or forcible sexual intercourse. Subsections of this statute focus on touching someone else while they are being restrained by another person, while they are unconscious, or while they are institutionalized. The touching in this statute can include touching over the clothes or under the clothes. The areas touched to qualify as an offense under this statute include “the sexual organ, anus, groin, or buttocks of any person, and the breast of a female.” In contrast, the crime of rape covers...
Is There a Grace Period for Child Support Pay...

Is There a Grace Period for Child Support Pay...

Many states allow a grace period after a payor fails to pay child support. During this period, there are no penalties or interest, and the payor gets a little extra time to get the money together or put the check in the mail. California’s child support payments work under a more precise system, and you may face penalties for any late or unpaid child support payments. Talk to a Ventura child support attorney about your case immediately if you are having trouble affording payments or think your payments might be late. The Law Offices of Bamieh and Erickson’s child support and child custody lawyers offer free consultations on child support cases. When is Child Support Considered “Late” in California? Child support in California works a little differently than in many states. In most states, courts will assign a due date for child support as part of the order. When payments begin to come in late or child support is in “arrears” (i.e., it has not been paid for some time), the court or the Department of Child Support Services (DCSS) will start charging interest and penalties for unpaid support. In California, the court will order a due date for child support, but the court does not typically leave the payor to make payments on time. Instead, the court generally requires wage garnishment to pay child support in nearly every case. With wage garnishment, DCSS deducts child support payments directly from your paycheck. In this system, neither side needs to worry about whether the payments are late or on time, since they are automatic. Many states use wage garnishment as...
What Are the Penalties for First Time Assault...

What Are the Penalties for First Time Assault...

Criminal charges for assault always have the potential of serious criminal fines and jail time. To make matters worth, most assault cases also come with charges for battery, which can mean facing penalties for both offenses. Even a first-time assault charge can carry penalties that can affect the rest of your life, especially for assault with a deadly weapon. For help with your case, contact the Ventura assault lawyers at the Law Offices of Bamieh and Erickson, and read on to learn more about the penalties for first-time assault charges in California. What are the Assault Penalties for a First Time Offenders in CA? Many crimes carry set penalties which give the judge a range of options. Some crimes have automatic upgrades for repeat offenders which alter that range or give different scales for first-time and second-time offenders. Unfortunately, assault gives one range which applies to all offenses – first-time or otherwise. However, judges usually sentence defendants without a criminal record more leniently, potentially producing reduced penalties. Assault is punished in California by a fine of up to $1,000 and the potential of a jail sentence of up to 6 months. These are the base penalties for the basic offense of attempting to “commit violent injury on the person of another.” If you commit the crime in certain ways or against certain victims, the penalties might be upgraded or modified. If the victim of an assault crime is a parking control officer, police officer, another emergency responder, a doctor, another hospital employee, a school employee, a juror, or another person specifically listed in the statute, the penalties are increased....
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