Yesterday it was announced that a 37-year-old former science teacher was sentenced to 10 years in prison after he was found guilty of choking and sexually assaulting a woman in October of 2013. Dale Kukucka of Andover still proclaims his innocence in the incident that allegedly took place inside a women’s restroom at the East Haddam Grange Hall. Kukucka is accused of choking the 23-year-old victim to the point of unconsciousness, then sexually assaulting her.
A public defender in the case requested that Kukucka get five years due to the fact that up until the time of his arrest, the defendant had lived an admirable life. He also pointed out that the crimes were fueled by alcohol. According to news reports, Kukucka, who was a teacher at Carmen Arace Intermediate School and the woman were at the hall during the Moodus Drum and Fife Corps Ancient Muster. It was not mentioned whether the two knew each other.
In June of last year, Kukucka rejected a plea deal choosing to go to trial. He stills insists he is innocent, but now stands convicted on a single charge each of first-degree strangulation, third-degree sexual assault, and third-degree assault. Two people came into the bathroom while the alleged attack was occurring, a man and a woman. The man attempted to keep Kukucka there until police arrived, but the defendant assaulted him and then fled. Kukucka’s girlfriend reportedly showed a photo of the defendant that was on her cell phone to the man, who confirmed he was the one who assaulted himself and the victim.
In addition to his 10 year prison sentence, Kukucka was sentenced to 15 years probation; he will also be required to register as a sex offender for the remainder of his life following his release from prison.
Sexual assault is a serious criminal offense, leaving those found guilty facing years in prison, fines, probation, required to register as sex offenders, and more depending on state laws, the defendant’s criminal history, the age of the victim, and other factors.
In Michigan, a conviction on charges of first-degree criminal sexual conduct may leave the accused facing life in prison depending of the circumstances of the case. For example, if the victim is younger than 13 or sexual penetration takes place in conjunction with another felony (regardless of the victim’s age), the accused may be sentenced to life behind bars.
If you have been accused of sexual assault or rape, you should be aware these accusations are extremely serious and could cost you your freedom, reputation, and much more. Never face allegations of sexual assault without the legal support and guidance of a seasoned Michigan sex crimes attorney.