The Stakes Are High

Being accused of sexual assault can make the future uncertain.  There’s no room for error.  To avoid hefty fines and jail time, it’s important to have a strong lawyer to guide you through the Connecticut court system. 

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7 Mistakes That Could Ruin Your Criminal Defense Case

7 Mistakes That Could Ruin Your Criminal Defense Case

Connecticut Sexual Assault Attorney

If you are facing a sexual assault charge in Connecticut, you are likely incredibly concerned about the potential consequences you might face. My name is Erin Field.  I am an experienced Connecticut sexual assault attorney that can defend your rights.

Depending on the details of the sexual assault charges against you, you may face a felony conviction, which carries fines and prison time. A sexual assault conviction is likely to play a major role in your life for years or a lifetime. It can present challenges to furthering your education or getting a job. I will be here to fight for your future and will seek to have the charges against you dropped or reduced.

I realize that facing a sexual assault charge can put a tremendous amount of stress and strain on you and possibly those you are close to. I understand what you’re going through, and I treat my clients with the utmost care and respect. I have extensive training in the area of defending sexual assault charges.

I provide complete confidentiality to everyone who reaches out to my law firm and I will provide honest legal advice and highly skilled representation. Call me, Erin Field, at Field Law Office, LLC today to schedule a free and confidential consultation about your legal rights and options.

What to Do If Accused of Sexual Assault in Connecticut

If you have been charged with sexual assault in Connecticut, your first call should be to an experienced Connecticut sexual assault attorney. Don’t speak to police before you have an attorney. Politely refuse to discuss the case and exercise your Fifth Amendment right to remain silent.

Don’t even discuss details of your case with family, and don’t try to attempt to call the alleged victim in hopes that they will drop the charges. The only person you should be speaking to is an experienced Connecticut sexual assault attorney. You should never assume that your innocence will be enough to secure a not-guilty verdict.

Defining Sexual Assault in Connecticut

According to the Connecticut Penal Code, sexual assault can be charged in the first, second, third, or fourth degree, depending on the accusations. Each degree carries different penalties, and additional factors can aggravate a charge or be separate offenses.

The most serious of sexual assault charges is sexual assault in the first degree, which can be a Class A or Class B felony. Sexual assault in the first degree is punishable by up to 25 years in prison and a fine of up to $20,000. The least serious is sexual assault in the fourth degree, but any assault of a sexual nature is viewed as serious by every judge in the state.

Sexual assault crimes listed in the Connecticut Penal Code include:

  • Sexual assault in the fourth degree. Sexual contact with someone who is legally not to consent. It is charged as a felony if the victim is a minor and the perpetrator is three or more years older, or if the victim is incompetent or relies on the perpetrator, such as a stepparent. It can also involve touching of a sexual nature outside of a person’s clothing.
  • Sexual assault in the third degree. Sexual contact with force or threat of force, or with firearm or threat of use of a firearm. Unlike sexual assault in the first and second degree, intercourse does not have to take place, only sexual conduct, such as touching, groping, or fondling.
  • Sexual assault in the second degree. Commonly referred to as statutory rape, this is sexual intercourse with someone 13 years of age or older but under 16 years of age and the perpetrator is more than three years older than the victim. This can also be charged against a person in a position of authority over the alleged victim.
  • Sexual assault in the first degree. Commonly referred to as rape, when an individual has sexual intercourse with another person by using force or the threat of force or when the victim is unable to consent to sex due to mental incapacitation or intoxication. This charge can be increased to aggravated sexual assault if the prosecutor alleges the offender used a weapon, purposely caused injury, or had two other persons present while the offense was taking place.

A knowledgeable Connecticut sexual assault attorney can explain each offense in greater detail and provide information on possible outcomes for your particular case.

How to Fight a Sexual Assault Charge in Connecticut

As an experienced Connecticut sexual assault defense lawyer, I can help you fight a sexual assault charge, protect your rights and reputation, and work to seek the best outcome possible.

As your lawyer, I will thoroughly investigate your case, help you in asserting any possible defenses, and guide you through the complex legal process. If you are charged with an offense that requires you to register as a sex offender and do not have a viable defense to show your innocence, I can help you explore the possibility of a plea bargain. This could allow you to plead guilty to a lesser crime that does not require sex offender registration.

One common defense strategy is to deny that the sexual assault happened in the first place or that it did not involve the accuser. Forensic evidence, such as a rape kit and DNA, can be used to back this defense. Another common strategy is to contend that the sexual act was consensual. This requires highly skilled argumentation on the part of your lawyer and could rely heavily on the use of character witnesses, psychologists, and private investigators, as well as the conduct of the accuser.

Registering as a Sex Offender in Connecticut

In Connecticut, nearly all sex crimes carry the requirement of registering as a sex offender. If you are convicted of sexual assault, you will have to not only register as a sex offender, but also periodically renew that registration or face additional penalties. I have represented people where I was able to negotiate an outcome did not include sex offender registration, even on some serious sex assault charges.

There are three categories of individuals who will generally face sex offender registration, if convicted. These include:

  1. Person convicted of an offense against a minor. This requires a 10-year period of registration for a first offense and lifetime for a subsequent offense.
  2. Person convicted of nonviolent sexual offenses. This requires a 10-year period of registration for a first offense and lifetime for a following offense.
  3. Person convicted of sexually violent crimes. These require lifetime registration.

Call me if you have any questions regarding the Connecticut sex offender registration. I will do everything possible to help you avoid a conviction for sexual assault and therefore avoid registration requirements.

How Field Law Office, LLC Can Help

It’s important to know that many criminal charges have a fair chance of resulting in a not-guilty verdict or being dismissed altogether. Many sexual assault cases that look bad on the surface play out much differently in the courtroom. As a skilled and experienced Connecticut sexual assault attorney, it is my duty to expose all the problems in the prosecution’s case against you.

Call Connecticut Sexual Assault Attorney Erin Field Today

Contact me today to schedule a free and confidential consultation. During the consultation, I will go over the facts of your sexual assault case in detail and explain what I will do to defend you against the charges you face. Contact me now so I can get started on your case right away.

Connecticut Sexual Assault Statutes

CrimeStatuteClassification (Penalty)
CrimeStatuteClassification (Penalty)
Aggravated Sexual Assault of a MinorCGS § Sec. 53a-70c
Class A felony (25 to 50 year)
Aggravated Sexual Assault in the First DegreeCGS § Sec. 53a-70a
Class B or A felony (1 to 25 years)
Sexual Assault in Spousal or Cohabiting RelationshipCGS § Sec. 53a-70b
Class B felony (1 to 20 years)
Sexual Assault in the First DegreeCGS § Sec. 53a-70
Class B or A felony (1 to 25 years)
Sexual Assault in the Second DegreeCGS § Sec. 53a-71
Class C or B felony (1 to 20 years)
Sexual Assault in the Third DegreeCGS § Sec. 53a-72a
Class D or C felony (1 to 10 years)
Sexual Assault in the Fourth DegreeCGS § Sec. 53a-73a
Class A misdemeanor or Class D felony (up to 5 years)
Rape in the First DegreeCGS § Sec. 53a-72
Class B felony (1 to 20 years)
Rape in the Second DegreeCGS § Sec. 53a-73
Class C felony (1 to 10 years)

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