In Michigan, the age of sexual consent is 16. As a result, anyone who has sexual contact with a minor who has not reached the age of 16 may be charged under Michigan’s criminal sexual conduct laws. If the unlawful conduct involves penetration, an individual may be charged with a first-degree or second-degree criminal sexual conduct offense.
Most of the time, if there is no penetration, but sexual contact occurs, an individual may be charged with a third-degree or fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct offense. Most of the time, if victims have not reached the age of 13, offenses are charged in the first-degree or second-degree. If victims are 13, 14, or 15, a third-degree or fourth-degree charge is applied.
Michigan Juvenile Sex Crimes Attorney
A criminal record can prevent a juvenile from getting into college, securing employment, and finding suitable housing. Registration as a sex offender can limit their choices, opportunities, and social interactions for the rest of their lives. While the juvenile justice system aims to rehabilitate youths and to keep them from additional criminal wrongdoing, the reality is that once a juvenile becomes part of the criminal justice system, getting out is tough. Being as proactive as possible and securing strong legal counsel is often the best way to ensure that a juvenile’s life opportunities remain intact in the wake of a complicated set of circumstances.
If your child has been arrested for a juvenile sex crime, reach out to Dallo Law, P.C. who can form a strong defense for the case. The stakes are too high to risk your child’s future with anything but the most aggressive criminal defense. Attorney J. Dallo at Dallo Law, P.C. is prepared to take your call and discuss all legal options.
Set up your first consultation by calling Dallo Law, P.C. at (248) 283-7000. Our firm accepts clients throughout the greater Oakland County and Macomb County area including Pontiac, Troy, Waterford Township, Oakland Charter Township, Royal Oak, Clarkston, Southfield, and Bloomfield Hills.
- Romeo And Juliet Law
- Penalties for Juvenile Sex Crimes in Michigan
- Statute Of Limitations
- Defenses for Juvenile Sex Crimes
- Additional Resources
Romeo and Juliet statutes honor the reality that teenagers aren’t always logical when choosing a partner with whom to explore their sexual identity. These statutes grant grace to young people engaging in consensual sexual activity. Under Michigan law, if a younger partner is under 16 and the older partner is less than five years older, the older partner will not be prosecuted for any consensual sexual contact between them.
The penalties for juvenile sex crimes differ, depending upon how any given offense has been classified.
Criminal Sexual Conduct In The First Degree: Punishable by a maximum of life imprisonment or for any term of years.
Criminal Sexual Conduct In The Second Degree: Punishable by imprisonment not to exceed 15 years.
Criminal Sexual Conduct In The Third Degree: Punishable by imprisonment not to exceed 15 years.
Criminal Sexual Conduct In The Fourth Degree: Punishable by imprisonment not to exceed two years, a fine of not more than $500, or both.
Note that Michigan does require some juvenile sex offenders to register as sex offenders with the state. Registration requirements depend on the circumstances of individual cases and the classification of any offense for which an offender has been convicted.
The statute of limitations for most sexual crimes charged as felonies is ten years, whereas the statute of limitations for most misdemeanors is six years. This means that unless a prosecutor files charges against an alleged offender within six or ten years of the date of the alleged crime, they cannot prosecute the suspect for that supposed act. On the other hand, first-degree criminal sexual conduct offenses aren’t generally subject to a statute of limitations, which means that they can be prosecuted at any time.
When a juvenile is charged with a sex offense, it is critically important that they seek experienced legal defense counsel immediately. Children are particularly vulnerable when questioned by law enforcement officers, so they must have a skilled advocate looking out for their interests at all times.
Depending upon the nature of the circumstances surrounding a juvenile sex crimes charge, various defenses may be effective for an alleged juvenile offender. For example, the ages of the individuals involved may turn the case. In Michigan, if a younger sexual partner has not yet reached the age of consent (16), but their consensual sexual partner is no more than five years older than they are, the older partner is generally protected from prosecution under the state’s Romeo and Juliet provision of the criminal code.
Additionally, a defense attorney may be able to undermine one or more elements of the prosecution’s case. If each element of an alleged criminal offense cannot be proven beyond a reasonable doubt, the prosecution cannot rightfully secure a conviction. As a result, defense attorneys usually scrutinize every element of an alleged offense to poke holes and sow doubt about the integrity of the prosecution’s case.
If proof of a juvenile defendant’s innocence can be presented to the court, a defense attorney will certainly attempt to use this proof to either have the case dropped or secure an acquittal. Similarly, if there is evidence of a false accusation or mistaken identity, this evidence will bolster the juvenile’s defense and undermine the prosecution’s case against them.
Juvenile Justice | Michigan Department of Health and Human Services – Visit the official Michigan Department of Health and Human Services website to learn more about the state’s juvenile justice programs and resources available for juvenile offenders.
At A Glance | Michigan Center for Youth Justice – Visit the official Michigan Center for Youth Justice website to learn about the non-profit work this organization undertakes in providing a fair opportunity for justice on behalf of Michigan’s youth.
Bloomfield Hills Juvenile Sex Crimes Attorney | Oakland County, MI
When juveniles are convicted of criminal sexual conduct in Michigan, they face a possible term of imprisonment, a criminal record, and even the potential for mandatory registration as a sex offender. As the consequences of a sex crime conviction can be truly life-altering, it is crucial for any juvenile who has been accused of criminal wrongdoing to be represented by skilled legal counsel.
If your child has been arrested for a juvenile sex crime, Dallo Law, P.C. can offer skilled legal representation. With his years of experience, sex crimes attorney J. Dallo will work tirelessly to ensure you receive the best possible outcome for your case.
Call Dallo Law, P.C. as soon as possible at (248) 283-7000 to set up your first consultation free. Dallo Law, P.C. has offices located in Bloomfield Hills, and accepts clients throughout the greater Oakland County and Macomb County area.