Criminal Sexual Contact

Mercer County NJ Criminal Sexual Contact Lawyer

Criminal sexual contact is one of the lowest level “sex offense” under the New Jersey criminal code. That is when you compare it to aggravated sexual assault and sexual assault.  However, it is still a fourth degree felony, it still carries with it mandatory Megan’s Law registering and it still carries with it up to eighteen months in a State Prison. So as you can see, criminal sexual contact could be considered one of the “lower” level sex offense but it still carries with it life changing consequences. In fact, a Defendant charged with criminal sexual contact, aggravated sexual assault, endangering the welfare of a child, lewdness or aggravated criminal sexual contact will be prosecuted by a special unit inside the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office known as the Special Victims Unit (SVU). The fact that they created a special unit should a strong indication of how seriously they take these types of charges. Therefore, it is crucial that you speak to an experienced Mercer County criminal defense attorney as soon as possible about your options. Time is of the essence when it comes to sex offenses.

If you have been arrested for criminal sexual contact or any other sex offense for that matter, the Law Offices of Proetta & Oliver can help. Mr. Oliver and Mr. Proetta have both dedicated their entire careers to defending those accused of crimes in courts throughout New Jersey, including Mercer County.  Mr. Oliver heads up our Mercer County practice and he has represented clients accused of aggravated sexual assault, sexual assault, lewdness, endangering the welfare of a child, criminal sexual contact and aggravated criminal sexual contact throughout his career. We serve all of Mercer County, including towns like Hightstown, Princeton, East Windsor, Hopewell, Robbinsville, Lawrence and West Windsor. If you would like to come into our office for a face to face consultation then please contact us directly at (609)789-0779. Our initial consultations are always free of cost, so if you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us.

Hamilton NJ Criminal Sexual Contact Attorney

The governing statute in New Jersey for criminal sexual contact is N.J.S.A. 2C:14-3(b). The statute in and of itself is rather brief. However, it was left extremely vague by legislatures so that it could encompass a wide array of potential conduct. It states in pertinent part that, “an actor is guilty of criminal sexual contact if he commits an act of sexual contact with the victim under any of the circumstances set for in section 2C:14-2(c) {Sexual Assault Statute}. One of the most crucial aspects of this statute is defining what qualifies as “an act of sexual contact”. Sexual contact has been defined as the:

  • “Intentional touching by the Defendant or by the victim of either the Defendant’s or victim’s intimate parts for the purpose of degrading or humiliating the victim or sexually arousing or gratifying the Defendant.”

So to be convicted of criminal sexual contact, the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office will need to establish beyond a reasonable doubt the following elements:

  • The Defendant committed an act of sexual contact with the victim; &
    • The Defendant used physical force or coercion but the victim was NOT injured; or  
    • The victim was on probation, parole or detained in a prison and the Defendant had supervisory control over the victim; or
    • The victim was at least 16 years old but less than 18 years old: &
      • The Defendant is related to the victim by blood or affinity; or
      • The Defendant had supervisory or disciplinary control over the victim; or
      • The Defendant is a parent or guardian.

So as you can see the offense of criminal sexual contact is complex. But that is not a bad thing when it comes to defending clients accused of criminal sexual contact. It gives an experienced criminal defense attorney a lot of room to attack the state’s case. If you would like to discuss your options with one of our attorneys then please contact us at (609)789-0779.

What are the Penalties for Criminal Sexual Contact in NJ?

Criminal sexual contact is a fourth degree felony offense in New Jersey. A fourth degree felony offense subjects a Defendant to up to eighteen months in a State Prison, a fine up to $10,000, a felony criminal record, Megan’s Law and Nicole’s Law. The collateral consequences can be more devastating the potential underlying consequences. Since this offense is a fourth degree felony, a presumption of non-incarceration applies to all Defendants who do not have a prior criminal history. With that being said, that presumption can be overcome and it does not apply if the Defendant does have a prior criminal history. In addition, a Defendant will be forced to register under Megan’s Law for at least fifteen years.

New Jersey does have a diversionary program that a Defendant may be able to take advantage of if they have been charged with criminal sexual contact. That program is called the Pretrial Intervention Program (PTI). PTI is a diversionary program that allows for Defendants to be placed in a diversionary program whereby if they complete the terms the charges will be outright dismissed.

Ewing NJ Criminal Sexual Contact Attorney

If you have been arrested and charged with criminal sexual contact, possession of child pornography, stalking, harassment, endangering the welfare of a child or lewdness in Mercer County, the Law Offices of Proetta & Oliver can help. Our office appears in courts throughout the county including the Mercer County Superior Courthouse, the Hamilton Municipal Court, the Princeton Municipal Court, the Hightstown Municipal Court, the East Windsor Municipal Court, the Ewing Municipal Court and the Robbinsville Municipal Court. If you would like to speak to one of our attorneys about your options, including any potential defense strategies, please contact us at (609)789-0779.