According to the Criminal Code of Canada, sexual assault is, “any unwanted sexual act done by one person to another or any sexual activity done without a person’s consent or without their voluntary agreement”. Whenever it comes to sexual assault charges, consent is taken very seriously.
If the consent is denied in these cases, then the defendant will be charged with sexual assault and can face a prison sentence. If you are dealing with a similar situation, it is important to understand the whole process and what you can do from your end.
What You Should Know About Sexual Assault and Sentencing in Canada
The sentence for any criminal charge depends entirely on the nature and the degree of the allegation against you. If the case is too complicated, it can take you years to solve everything. The first piece of advice offered in cases like this is to hire a capable attorney who can provide you with strong representation to get you justice. It is your only way to ensure you are getting the best possible result out of this unfortunate situation.
What Factors Determine the Severity of Sentence for Sexual Assault in Canada
The first thing you should understand is, sexual assault is a very serious offense and there are several factors at play here. There are some factors that could aggravate the whole situation while there are also certain factors to mitigate it. Below we have listed both of these factors and how they can affect your case:
- Showing remorsefulness for your actions and accepting your mistake could play in your favor. The judge should realize that you are offering a sincere apology and you are ashamed of your actions. This could encourage the judge to give you a reduced sentence. However, this will only work if you are a first-time offender.
- If you are a first-time offender then you are likely to receive a reduced sentence.
- If the offender is less than 18 years of age or is a minor, then he or she is likely to receive a reduced sentence.
- If the offender is a second or third-time offender, then the judge will certainly not offer him or her a reduced sentence
- The age of the victim is also at a play here. If the victim is minor then you will have a more severe sentencing
- If the accused was aware of the victim’s age, it is also taken into account while deciding his sentencing. If the offender’s lawyer is able to prove that the accused had no idea about the victim’s age then it can play in favor of the accused.
- The vulnerability of the victim is also a very important factor. If the victim was drunk, under some kind of influence, unconscious, then the punishment will be more severe.
- Based on the degree of the violence, the assault charges are of varying types. The more severe the degree, the more severe the punishment will be.
- If the offender was in a position of authority, then it could be an aggravating factor that could result in more severe punishment.
- The assault will be considered aggravated assault if there was any penetration involved. It will directly take the case to the next level.
- If the use of a weapon was involved then the case will be treated as more serious and the punishment will be decided accordingly.
Least Sentence for Sexual Assault in Canada
If the victim is less than 16 years of age and the case is severe then it will be treated as an indictment and the maximum sentencing will be 14 years in jail. If the victim is 16 years and above and the case is treated as an indictable offense then the maximum sentencing is ten years. In case the case is treated as summary conviction then a maximum of 18 months of jail is given to the offender.
Contact Sexual Assault lawyer Toronto – David Genis today to discuss your case and get a free consultation.