On Tuesday evening, February 3, a Minnesota woman who is described in news reports as a “good Samaritan” was allegedly sexually assaulted and physically attacked by the man she pulled over to help along I-35 northbound near Esko, according to news reports at the Grand Forks Herald.
The incident took place between 10 and 11 p.m. when the woman pulled off the interstate to help a man whose Ford F-150 truck was apparently broken down. According to the Carlton County Sheriff’s Office, the truck was a 2003 model with and extended cab and black “matte” paint, with low profile tires and large black matte color wheels. The woman was allegedly attacked when she stopped to help the man, who is described as a white male with a medium build, in his late 20’s or early 30’s, with brown hair and a short beard. At the time of the attack, he was wearing blue jeans, black work boots, and a black Carhartt hoodie.
In an updated news report, authorities had released a sketch of the man they believe sexually assaulted and attacked the woman. Any potential witnesses have been asked to contact the sheriff’s office at 218-384-9520.
While news articles do not describe the sexual assault of the woman, in Michigan sexual assault includes any type of sexual behavior, contact, or penetration that is non-consensual, or in other words not agreed to by the victim. Sexual assault may involve forced penetration, what many refer to as rape, or it may involve touching or fondling of breasts, buttocks, inner thighs, the groin, or even the clothing that covers these areas of the body.
If the suspect in the above case did actually rape the woman, he may be facing extremely serious charges when found. In the state of Michigan, rape, a crime that is charged as first-degree criminal sexual conduct, carries a potential life prison term for those convicted. Factors such as age also play a role in the crime an individual may be charged with.
Regardless of the degree of the crime (first-, second-, third-, or fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct), those who are convicted face being labeled a sex offender by society, and often must register as a sex offender. This can impact an individual’s career, where they may live, and more.
If you have been accused of sexual assault, it is vital to consult with a highly skilled and aggressive Michigan sex crimes attorney. Your freedom, legal rights, and reputation are at risk. There are legal options which may be effective in limiting the damage to your life, and you are innocent until proven guilty. Take the first step, and speak with an experienced defense lawyer whose ultimate goal is to protect you from harsh criminal penalties.