HENNEPIN COUNTY, CRIMINAL SEXUAL CONDUCT 3rd DEGREE:
Client was a young man, only 19, charged with criminal sexual conduct for allegedly having sex with a girl who was drunk. No other witnesses were present at the time. Often these allegations follow voluntary sexual encounters that people are later embarrassed about, and sometimes a woman feels the only way to retain her dignity is to allege rape in order to avoid shame or stigma from parents, boyfriends, or peers. This speaks to a larger problem in our society sometimes called “slut shaming” which holds young women to a different standard of sexual propriety. However, criminal sexual conduct is a very serious charge that can result in prison, but even more importantly, results in an effective life sentence of stigma for the accused, who is forever known as a sex offender. So when someone is wrongfully accused of criminal sexual conduct, Alex De Marco takes it very seriously.
Criminal sexual conduct cases like this can be difficult because there are often only two witnesses, resulting in a “he said, she said” scenario, and a complete nightmare for the accused, who is effectively placed in a position of proving his innocence, which is against the standards of our justice system. This circumstance is further complicated if the accused has made any statement to the police admitting any sexual contact whatsoever, because then physical evidence becomes less necessary, and now all the state needs to do is convince a judge or jury that it was not consensual based solely on the alleged victim’s testimony. Once a statement has been made to police, it is extremely difficult to fight a case. In this case, Alex was able to suppress the statement of the accused to the police, because the police used improper coercion tactics to convince the defendant that the investigation was not serious, when in fact they had already made the decision to charge him with criminal sexual conduct. The defense’s independent investigation also revealed significant inconsistencies in the accuser’s story. It became clear that this was an awkward sexual encounter that both the young man and young woman felt ashamed of, not because a crime had been committed, but due in fact to their own sexual morality. In other words, they both felt guilty of their perceived immoral behavior, but it did not amount to anything criminal.
A person accused of criminal sexual conduct needs an attorney that is not only an aggressive lawyer willing to take the case to trial, but who understands the behavior of people, and why people make false accusations of rape. A lawyer that is actually sensitive to the to the circumstances of accuser and the accused will be better enabled to understand the situation, have confidence in his client’s case, and demonstrate the lie that has been put forward. These cases can often be costly because an attorney wants to do a good job with the case, and that means turning some other cases away for awhile and making a living working on just one case. The lifelong consequences for one wrongfully accused of criminal sexual conduct make investing in a competent lawyer all the more important.
If you or a friend or loved one has been accused of criminal sexual conduct, it is imperative that NO STATEMENT is made to police, or ANYONE ELSE WHATSOEVER. If a statement has already been made, there are still defenses and one cannot undo the past. It is important to contact an attorney right away if there is even a hint of an accusation of rape. At our office, we offer an extended free consultation in these matters, assuring you of the approach we will take to defend your rights, and your dignity, before any agreements are signed or payments made. Alex De Marco has handled more than 30 criminal sexual conduct cases in his 8 year career, and he stands ready and able to aggressively defend you against the large machine of criminal prosecution.