Any actor who knowingly inflicts sexual intrusion or penetration on a victim commits sexual assault if the actor causes submission of the victim against the victim’s will; or the actor knows that the victim is incapable of appraising the nature of the victim’s conduct; or
the victim is less than fifteen years of age and the actor is at least four years older than the victim; the victim is at least fifteen years of age but less than seventeen years of age and the actor is at least ten years older than the victim.
It is important to remember that if your child is four years older than their boyfriend or girlfriend and they engage in sexual activity, even if it is consensual, your child may be charged with sexual assault. Consent is no defense when one of the participants is under the age of 15 years and the other participant is four years older.
A conviction of sexual assault may require an indeterminate sentence to prison. What that means is that upon conviction of sexual assault, you may be given an indeterminate sentence that involves the phrase “to life.” The first number of an indeterminate sentence will be the minimum number of years you have to serve in prison (ie, 4, 6, 8, etc). However the phrase “to life” immediately following the minimum number of prison years means the department of corrections does not have to release you from prison at any time during the remainder of your natural life. Essentially, a “4 years to life” sentence is a life sentence because the department of corrections may wait 10 years to release you, 20 years, 30 years, or never.
Even if you are sentenced to probation for a sexual assault conviction, or released from prison, you will most likely remain on sex offender probation for decades. You will be required to complete sex offender treatment during the duration of probation. Any violation of sex offender treatment during probation will result in a sentence to prison. Registration as a sex offender will be required, possibly for life.