Detroit Sex Crimes Attorney - Definition of "Sexual Penetration"

First Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct in Michigan is about the most serious criminal charge a person can face besides First-Degree Murder. Not only is the maximum penalty LIFE in Prison for Michigan Criminal Sexual Conduct 1st Degree charges ("CSC 1"), but it also includes a mandatory minimum of 25 years in Prison if the alleged victim is under 13 years old. Michigan Third Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct charges are similar but slightly less serious, carrying a maximum of 15 years in Prison, but CSC 3 also puts you on the Michigan Sex Offender Registry (SORA) for Life as a Tier 1 Offender.

In this article, Detroit Sex Crimes Attorney Brian J. Prain takes a look at the definition of Sexual Penetration in Michigan Criminal Sexual Conduct laws. The Michigan definition of Sexual Penetration includes the things most people would assume are included, but also includes some things that we don't typically think of as "penetration."

Criminal Sexual Conduct in Michigan is broken down into four "Degrees" (click each link below to visit our Main Page for each Degree of CSC):

RELATED: Click here to read about Detroit Sex Crimes Attorney Brian J. Prain's impressive record of verdicts of NOT GUILTY of Criminal Sexual Conduct.

Of course, there are plenty of other Michigan Sex Crimes, such as Assault With Intent to Commit Sexual Penetration, and you can visit our Sex Crimes Main Page for more information about them.

What separates the Degrees of Criminal Sexual Conduct in Michigan are the different types of facts surrounding the alleged Sexual Assault that make up each Degree. At the most basic level is the question whether it involves alleged "Sexual Penetration" and/or only "Sexual Contact" under Michigan law. Where the allegation includes "Sexual Penetration," the charge would be either Criminal Sexual Conduct 1st Degree or Criminal Sexual Conduct 3rd Degree. On the other hand, where the allegation involves "Sexual contact," but without penetration, then the charge would either be Criminal Sexual Conduct 2nd Degree or Criminal Sexual Conduct 4th Degree.

Therefore, in order to understand why a person is charged with either Criminal Sexual Conduct 1st Degree or Criminal Sexual Conduct 3rd Degree, one must understand the Michigan definition of Sexual penetration.

First, the term "Sexual Penetration" is actually defined right in the beginning section of the Michigan CSC laws, MCL 750.520a(r):

...(r) "Sexual penetration" means sexual intercourse, cunnilingus, fellatio, anal intercourse, or any other intrusion, however slight, of any part of a person's body or of any object into the genital or anal openings of another person's body, but emission of semen is not required.

Second, there are the Michigan Criminal Jury Instructions, which tell us exactly how a Judge would read the definition to a Jury if you were on trial for CSC 1 or CSC 3 in Michigan. For this reason, this is the more important version of the definition to know. The Michigan Criminal Jury Instructions for CSC cases define "Sexual Penetration" as follows:

  • (a) entry into the Complainant’s [genital opening / anal opening] by the defendant’s [penis / finger / tongue / some other object]. Any entry, no matter how slight, is enough. It does not matter whether the sexual act was completed or whether semen was ejaculated.
  • (b) entry into the Complainant’s mouth by the defendant’s penis. Any entry, no matter how slight, is enough. It does not matter whether the sexual act was completed or whether semen was ejaculated.
  • (c) touching of the Complainant’s [genital openings / genital organs] with the defendant’s mouth or tongue.
  • (d) entry by [any part of one person's body / some object] into the genital or anal opening of another person's body. Any entry, no matter how slight, is enough. It is alleged in this case that a sexual act was committed by [XYZ person]. It does not matter whether the sexual act was completed or whether semen was ejaculated.

As you can see, the Michigan Definition of Sexual Penetration includes even alleged oral sex - not our typical definition of "penetration." And, it includes even things that fall short of what most people typically think of as oral sex. What is important to know is that when it comes to the Michigan CSC laws, there is common-sense, and then there is the law - and they are not the same thing.

RELATED: Being investigated for Criminal Sexual Conduct in Michigan? Click here to learn how to AVOID JAIL.

RELATED: Click here to learn about the Criminal Sexual Conduct Court Process in Michigan.

If you or someone you know is being accused of Criminal Sexual Conduct in Michigan, get in touch immediately with Detroit Criminal Sexual Conduct Attorney Brian J. Prain and start building your plan of attack. When you talk to Brian, you'll immediately see he's not your average Defense Lawyer - Brian has proven again and again that he has the drive, the skills, and the knowhow to take you from nightmare to NOT GUILTY. Among many other awards, Brian has been named one of the 2019 21 Best Criminal Defense Lawyers in Detroit by Expertise.com, one of D Business Magazine's Top Lawyers, 2019, awarded in Super Lawyers Magazine, named one of the Top 100 Criminal Defense Attorneys by The National Trial Lawyers, one of the Top 10 Criminal Defense Attorneys by the National Academy of Criminal Defense Attorneys, and much, much more. Just read Brian's Google reviews to read the stories of some of the lives Brian has saved.

For Criminal Sexual Conduct defense, don't do anything until you contact Prain Law, PLLC at (248) 731-4543 or via email using our Contact Form.

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