According to Toronto sexual assault lawyer, sexual assault encompasses any kind of unwanted sexual touch without consent. This involves a wide range of unwanted touching, from rape to groping.
So, what are the basic legal aspects of sexual assault? Ernst Ashurov has analysed the element of sexual assault in its simplest form for you to have a better understanding of it. Sexual assault offences are dealt with seriously in Toronto, and usually have a detrimental effect on the people involved. So, a sexual assault case is not taken lightly by the jury. To convict someone for a sexual assault, the Toronto sexual assault lawyer must prove the following things beyond a reasonable doubt;
- Force Was Intentionally Applied.
For one to secure a sexual assault conviction, the force used need not be violent. It could be a gentle force such as groping or rubbing. It could also involve indirect contact, i.e. where one uses a stick or any other instrument. However, the application of force must be intentional. It shouldn’t be as a result of an accident or another type of involuntary action.
- The Absence Of Consent
The second aspect of conviction parameter is related to the willingness or the consent of the victim.
Here, the state of the mind of the compliant is the central element which is considered. If the Toronto sexual assault lawyer determines that the complainant was not willing in his mind concerning the force in mind, then the case is settled.
However, consent ought to be voluntary. Is shouldn’t be enticed through fraud, abuse of power, threats, coercion or abuse of trust or authority by accused toward the victim. In other words, if the consent was as a result of these factors, then that cannot be a defence, even if the complainant used the actual consent words since it was exploitative consent.
Also, the jury will scrutinise the totality of the evidence presented to them in relation to the mind’s state of the complainant. If the jury believes that the complainant didn’t consent, then the case will be taken to the next stage of analysis.
- Knowledge Of Non-Consent Of The Complainant
According to Toronto sexual assault lawyer, the knowledge of the lack of consent is not universal, but it can take a myriad of forms. At its simplest form, the knowledge can imply a basic understanding of the non-consent of the complainant since she says so.
In another form, it can imply that the defendant wasn’t keen concerning the consent. These two concepts can be confusing since they are closely interlinked, and basically refer to circumstances where the accused understands the prevailing risk that the victim is not consenting, but rather opts to proceed with the sexual act without asking the complainant.
The full defence can be on the side of the accused where the person honestly believed the complainant was willing. Nevertheless, in Toronto, the willingness must be conveyed through the use of words or conduct. So, silence, ambiguous conduct and or passivity may not be strong grounds to rely upon as the basis of the offence. In fact, according to the sexual assault lawyer Toronto, referring to the supreme laws of Canada, the person engaging in the sexual act must take reasonable steps during the conduct to ensure to the consent of the complainant.
- The Force Used Is Of Sexual Nature
In some instances, the nature of the touching could be an issue. Sexual touching basically means a kind of touching that violates the sexual preservation of the complainant. The problem here is to determine whether the touching was intentional or unintentional, and that can be determined if there was a casual observer in both circumstances.
The alleged part of the body touched, the circumstances in which the action took place, the rapport between the accused and the complainant, the communication(verbal or gestures) accompanying the action as well as the other prevailing situations will be analysed by the jury and judge.
After considering these elements, the judge will come up with a verdict of the case.