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Indecent Assault

Indecent contact with another person can lead to an individual being arrested and charged with a sex crime. Depending on the type of contact and the age of the alleged victim, this may be classified as a misdemeanor or felony offense.

There are two different charges for this type of contact: simple indecent assault and aggravated indecent assault. A conviction for either one of these crimes can result not only in lengthy imprisonment and steep fines but can also require the alleged offender to register as a sex offender, causing even more difficulties upon release from jail.

Philadelphia Indecent Assault Lawyer

If you are under investigation for or have been charged with this type of indecent contact with another person, you will want to immediately seek legal counsel. Alva & Shuttleworth, LLC fights for clients all over Chester County,  Bucks County, Philadelphia County, Montgomery County, Delaware County, and New Jersey.

When the only evidence against an alleged offender is the allegations made by an alleged victim, our firm can investigate and uncover flaws in these claims that help get charges reduced or completely dismissed. You can let our indecent assault attorneys review your case when you call (215) 665-1695 to schedule a free consultation.


Pennsylvania Indecent Assault Information Center


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Indecent Assault Charges in Philadelphia

One category of this crime is defined in Pennsylvania Consolidated Statute Title 18 § 3126 as being when an alleged offender has indecent contact with the alleged victim, causes the alleged victim to have indecent contact with the alleged offender, or intentionally causes the alleged victim to come into contact with seminal fluid, urine or feces for the purpose of arousing sexual desire in the alleged offender or the alleged victim. The so-called simple indecent assault is graded as follows:

  • If the alleged offender does so without the complainant's consent, this is a second-degree misdemeanor.
  • If the alleged offender does so by forcible compulsion, this is a first-degree misdemeanor.
  • If the alleged offender does so by threat of forcible compulsion that would prevent resistance by a person of reasonable resolution, this is a first-degree misdemeanor.
  • If the alleged victim is unconscious or the alleged offender knows that the alleged victim is unaware that the indecent contact is occurring, this is a first-degree misdemeanor.
  • If the alleged offender has substantially impaired the alleged victim's power to appraise or control his or her conduct by administering or employing, without the knowledge of the alleged victim, drugs, intoxicants or other means for the purpose of preventing resistance, this is a first-degree misdemeanor.
  • If the alleged victim suffers from a mental disability which renders him or her incapable of consent, this is a first-degree misdemeanor.
  • If the alleged victim is less than 16 years of age and the alleged offender is four or more years older than the alleged victim and the alleged victim and the alleged offender are not married to each other, this is a second-degree misdemeanor.
  • If the alleged victim is less than 13 years of age, this is a first-degree misdemeanor. However, this is a third-degree felony if the alleged victim is less than 13 years of age and any of the following also apply:
    • It is the alleged offender’s second or subsequent offense.
    • There has been a course of conduct of indecent assault by the alleged offender.
    • The indecent assault was committed by touching the alleged victim's sexual or intimate parts with sexual or intimate parts of the alleged offender.
    • The indecent assault is committed by touching the alleged offender's sexual or intimate parts with the alleged victim's sexual or intimate parts.

The act classified as aggravated indecent assault is defined in Pennsylvania Consolidated Statute Title 18 § 3125 as being when an alleged offender engages in penetration, however slight, of the genitals or anus of an alleged victim with a part of the alleged offender's body for any purpose other than good faith medical, hygienic, or law enforcement procedures and any of the following also apply:

  • The alleged offender does so without the alleged victim's consent.
  • The alleged offender does so by forcible compulsion.
  • The alleged offender does so by threat of forcible compulsion that would prevent resistance by a person of reasonable resolution.
  • The alleged victim is unconscious or the alleged offender knows that the complainant is unaware that the penetration is occurring.
  • The alleged offender has substantially impaired the alleged victim's power to appraise or control his or her conduct by administering or employing, without the knowledge of the alleged victim, drugs, intoxicants or other means for the purpose of preventing resistance.
  • The alleged victim suffers from a mental disability which renders him or her incapable of consent.
  • The alleged victim is less than 16 years of age and the person is four or more years older than the complainant and the complainant and the person are not married to each other.

If the alleged offender commits any of these actions, the crime is classified as a second-degree felony. However, if the alleged victim is less than 13 years of age, then this may be classified as aggravated indecent assault of a child and graded as a first-degree felony.


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Pennsylvania Indecent Assault Penalties

A person who is merely accused of this crime can suffer tremendous embarrassment and shame. A conviction could require the alleged offender to register as a sex offender and have profound consequences on his or her ability to obtain employment, housing, or public benefits.

Additionally, a conviction can also result in one of the following combinations of imprisonment and fines, depending on the specific classification of the assault offense:

  • Second-Degree Misdemeanor — Up to two years in prison and fine of up to $5,000
  • First-Degree Misdemeanor — Up to five years in prison and fine of up to $10,000
  • Third-Degree Felony — Up to seven years in prison and fine of up to $15,000
  • Second-Degree Felony — Up to 10 years in prison and fine of up to $25,000
  • First-Degree Felony — Up to 20 years in prison and fine of up to $25,000

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Defenses Against Indecent Assault in Philadelphia

While many alleged offenders will often feel as though they are in a position in which they are presumed guilty and needing to prove their innocence, the truth is that there are often several defenses that may be utilized against these types of charges. Some examples include, but are not limited to:

  • Consent of alleged adult victim
  • False allegations
  • Improper influence over alleged child indecent assault victim
  • Mistaken identity
  • No criminal intent
  • Alleged victim was alleged offender’s spouse

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Find an Indecent Assault Lawyer in Pennsylvania

Have you been accused of or charged with any of these forms of indecent contact with another individual? You will want to obtain legal representation as soon as possible in order to give yourself the best chance at securing a favorable outcome to your case.

Alva & Shuttleworth, LLC helps people in the situations throughout Delaware County, Montgomery County, Philadelphia County, Bucks County, Chester County, and New Jersey. Call (215) 665-1695 right now to let our indecent assault attorneys provide a complete evaluation of your case during a free, confidential consultation.

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