Sexual (Indecent) Assault and Battery (265/13)

Definition of Indecent Assault and Battery

Indecent (sexual) assault and battery is an offensive touching that occurs upon certain specified parts of the body.  Besides for the additional element of indecency, from the perspective of a criminal defense attorney, the crime of indecent assault and battery is unlike regular assault and battery in a few very important ways. 

Difference from Ordinary Assault and Battery

First, indecent assault and battery charges are routinely brought months or years after the alleged offense.  The delay in time provides for very different kinds of evidence than in regular assault and battery cases, some of which can prove inconsistent with the allegations.  It also means that, as time goes on, memories fade.  Facts become distorted, and where those facts fail to present a clear picture of the allegations, reasonable doubt as to any one of those facts grows.

Second, unlike an assault and battery, the required proof of which is relatively vague and not very demanding, the proof of an indecent assault and battery is subject to strict proof, and the evidence must be much more precise than for a regular assault and battery

Third, the defendant and the alleged victim in cases of indecent assault and battery are usually acquaintances or relatives.  The unfortunate result is that such charges tend to split the loyalties of the families involved.  Testimony and stories spin out of control and stories become inflated.  Often, this causes something to come out to call into question the entire series of events.

A 'Sex Offense'

Indecent assault and batter is a 'sex offense.'  A conviction can expose you to a wide range of penalties based on the specifics of the offense charged, as well as sex offender registration which can be both a devastating hardship and an opportunity for police to re-arrest you minor technical mistakes that expose you to years of additional jail time.  In those cases an attorney can help you determine the best way to make your side of the story come through, by knowing where to find the evidence you need and how to present it in court.

Indecent assault and battery charges are very serious, and complicated cases.  Contact me now to discuss the evidence in your case in a private consultation if you have been charged with indecent assault and battery.


See: G.L. c. 256 s. 13B; G.L c. 265 s. 13H.