If you face Ohio gross sexual imposition charges, a sex crimes lawyer provides you with the best opportunity of reducing or eliminating your criminal charges.
Gross sexual imposition (GSI) occurs when a person has sexual contact with another person that is against the other person’s will. Sexual contact, for the purposes of a GSI crime, includes the touching of another person’s genital area, thigh, buttocks, or breast.
In Ohio, charges in GSI cases must be filed within 20 years from the date of the alleged incident.
If you face gross sexual imposition charges in Ohio, you should contact a Columbus sex crimes attorney as soon as possible.
Ohio’s Definition of Gross Sexual Imposition
Ohio law defines gross sexual imposition as:
- Having sexual contact with another who is not the accused’s spouse,
- Causing another to have sexual contact with the accused, or
- Causing two or more persons to have sexual contact.
However, for the accused’s conduct to constitute gross sexual imposition, the sexual contact must take place in one of the following circumstances:
- The accused used force or threats of force;
- The accused provided drugs, alcohol, or other intoxicating substances, without the victim’s knowledge or during a medical procedure, to prevent resistance and impair the victim’s judgment;
- The victim was under the age of thirteen; or
- The accused acted with knowledge that the victim could not resist or consent because of a mental disability or advanced age.
Additionally, gross sexual imposition may occur when the victim was under the age of 12 and the accused touched the victim for the purpose of abusing, humiliating, harassing, degrading, or gratifying the sexual desire of any person.
The punishments for gross sexual imposition charges include jail time, fines, and sex offender registration.
Jail Time and Fines
Depending on the circumstances of your case, gross sexual imposition in Ohio is punishable as a fourth-degree or third-degree felony.
It is a fourth-degree felony when:
- The accused used force or threats of force;
- Drugs or alcohol impaired the victim’s judgment; or
- The victim could not resist or consent because of a mental disability or advanced age.
A fourth-degree felony carries a punishment of six to eight months in jail and up to a $5,000 fine.
Ohio Gross sexual imposition is a third-degree felony when:
- The victim was under the age of 13, or
- The victim was under the age of 12 and the accused intended to abuse or harm the victim.
A third-degree felony carries a maximum of 60 months in jail and up to a $10,000 fine.
Sex Offender Registration
A person convicted of gross sexual imposition in Ohio will have to register as either a Tier I, II, or III sex offender, depending on the facts of their case.
Tier I sex offenders must register as sex offenders annually for 15 years. Tier II sex offenders must register every six months for 25 years. Tier III sex offenders must register every 90 days for the remainder of their life.
Additionally, all sex offenders must register with their local sheriff’s office:
- Any change of address,
- A change of employment, and
- Enrollment into any higher education program.
Furthermore, sex offender registration can make it harder to find employment and housing and to get into higher education programs.
Difference from Sexual Imposition
Sexual imposition is a less serious crime than gross sexual imposition. In Ohio, it is a third-degree misdemeanor that carries a punishment of up to 60 days in jail and a $500 fine. Unlike gross sexual imposition, sexual imposition does not involve situations where the use or threat of force took place.
Sexual imposition can occur in the following circumstances:
- The accused knew their conduct was offensive or reckless,
- The victim was not aware of sexual contact,
- The accused knew the victim’s ability to understand the nature of the conduct or control the accused’s behavior was impaired,
- The victim was at least 13 but not 16 years old, or
- The accused was a mental health professional at the time of the incident who caused the victim to falsely believe the contact was necessary for mental health treatment.
If you face sexual imposition charges, you should still contact a sex crimes lawyer.
Two common defenses that may be available in Ohio gross sexual imposition cases include the violation of your constitutional rights and false accusations.
The Police Violated Your Constitutional Rights
Under the Fourth Amendment, police generally need a warrant to search you or seize your property. If police obtained text messages, videos, photographs, or other digital evidence through an unlawful search or seizure, the evidence might be excluded.
You’ve Been Falsely Accused
Most of the time, sex crimes are based on the word of the accuser against your word. If you believe you were wrongly accused of a GSI crime, contact a sex crimes lawyer. A lawyer can investigate your case and strive to prove your innocence.
Why You Should Contact a Sex Crimes Lawyer
If you face Ohio gross sexual imposition charges, a sex crimes lawyer provides you with the best opportunity of reducing or eliminating your criminal charges. Our attorneys at Joslyn Law Firm have substantial experience in many types of sex crimes cases. We understand the effect a gross sexual imposition accusation can have on your relationships with family, friends, and employers. We provide aggressive legal defense and will raise any defenses applicable to your case. Contact us today to schedule your confidential consultation.
By Brian Joslyn
Contact Joslyn Law Firm for legal assistance, questions, or representation.