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Sexual assault of a child by a school staff person is a serious felony charge.  Contact our defense attorneys at (414) 270-0202 for help.

Sexual assault of a child by a school staff person is a serious charge in Wisconsin.  Unfortunately, charges like this will attract media attention and negative stigma from entire communities.  It’s our advice to immediately hire a strong, experience criminal defense attorney as your ally.  Our criminal defense attorneys are amongst the best in Wisconsin.  Contact Meyer Van Severen, S.C. at (414) 270-0202 to begin fighting your case.

Sexual assault of a child by a school staff person is a Class H felony, meaning the charge carries a maximum penalty of 6 years in prison and $10,000.00 in fines.  That 6 years in prison breaks into 3 years initial confinement and 3 years extended supervision.  Finally, it’s important to note that prosecutors will often stack additional charges related to the conduct on top of this charge.  So unfortunately, usually you will face more potential time.

Finally, it’s important that you hire a criminal defense attorney.  Not a general practice attorney. Not a family law attorney.  But someone who specializes in this area of law.  At Meyer Van Severen, S.C. our entire practice is dedicated to criminal defense.  We especially focus on serious charges such as sexual assault and homicide.  Contact us at (414) 270-0202 and let’s start fighting your case.

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What is sexual assault of a child by a school staff person?

Section 948.095(2) of the Wisconsin Statutes prohibits this offense.  The law indicates:

“(2) Whoever has sexual contact or sexual intercourse with a child who has attained the age of 16 years and who is not the defendant’s spouse is guilty of a Class H felony if all of the following apply:
(a) The child is enrolled as a student in a school or a school district.
(b) The defendant is a member of the school staff of the school or school district in which the child is enrolled as a student.”
Importantly, as the statute makes clear, this offense focuses on relationships between school staff personnel and students.  Secondly, those students and staff must attend the same school.  For example, if student attends school A, but teacher works at school B, there isn’t a basis for this charge.
Finally, it’s important to note this crime focuses on children over 16 years old.  If victim is 12 years old at the time of the offense, this section likely won’t lead to charges.  That all being said, in such a situation the defendant still likely faces charges for first or second degree sexual assault of a child.

What are the elements of sexual assault of a child by a school staff person?

Like all criminal charges in Wisconsin, this offense has elements.  An element is a part of the offense, and the government must prove each element beyond a reasonable doubt.  Wisconsin Criminal Jury Instruction 2139 provides the definition:

  • Firstly, the defendant had sexual contact or intercourse with the victim, who was not the defendant’s spouse; and
  • Secondly, the victim had attained the age of 16 years and had not attained the age of 18 years; and
  • Thirdly, the victim was enrolled as a student in a school or a school district; and
  • Finally, the defendant was a member of the school staff of the school or school district in which victim was enrolled as a student.

The jury instructions are important because these are the words the judge reads to the jury at trial.  Focusing our defense on establishing a failure of the elements is a great way to start defending your case.  After all, if one of the elements fails, so does the whole charge.

Important definitions

“School” and “school staff” are important definitions you must understand when facing a charge like this.

School means a public or private elementary or secondary school, or a tribal school… (Wis. Stat. sec. 948.095(1)(a).

School staff means any person who provides services to a school or a school board, including an employee of a school or a school board and a person who provides services to a school or a school board under a contract.

Obviously these definitions include teachers, janitors, and kitchen staff.  But what about substitute teachers?  Because those individuals provide services to a school under contract, they’re covered.

But what about a situation involving an outside groundskeeping crew?  For example, the school contracts with Company A for snow removal.  Are employees of Company A covered by this law?  All organizations that provide services for a school do so under contract.  Therefore, just like substitute teachers, the guy who drives a snow plow arguably falls under this section.

How do we defend my criminal case?

All criminal cases are different.  Cases like this are especially delicate on the front end of representation.

The media will come to your employer (or other employers, depending upon your employment status).  They’re going to show up at your front door.  And they’re going to call you.  Sometimes it feels right to respond to the media to clear your name.  Do not do that.  Sometimes family members want to do the same thing.  At the time of the writing of this article, we haven’t ever seen anyone handle the media properly.  If they call, do not answer.  If they come to your door, do not answer.  And if they corner you somewhere, remain calm and explain that you have no comment.  Walk away.  And finally, don’t let family members act on your behalf.  Your criminal defense attorney will address the media if it’s beneficial to your defense.

Statements you make to the media are not constitutionally protected in any manner.  And they’ll be used against you.  But statements given to law enforcement will too.  Thankfully, the constitution protects rights associated with those statements.  If police didn’t properly read your Miranda rights, we may be able to suppress your statements and keep them out of trial.  (And finally, if you haven’t given a statement to police, don’t.)

A basketball court where sexual assault by a staff person occurred
Sexual assault of a child by a school staff person is a felony in Wisconsin. Contact one of our top criminal defense attorneys at (414) 270-0202.

Why should I hire a criminal defense attorney at Meyer Van Severen, S.C.

Firstly, it’s important that you hire a specialist to defend your case.  Both of the partners, and our associates, at Meyer Van Severen focus on providing sexual assault defense.  And make no mistake, while this charge doesn’t have the label “sexual assault,” the prosecutors and law enforcement police specializing in this area will be working against you.  Hiring a criminal defense attorney at Meyer Van Severen is the perfect counterpoint.

Our defense attorneys are just that.  Certainly all the work we do focuses on criminal cases.  We don’t handle divorces or business law, or anything that won’t help you survive this case.  Hire an ally.  Hire one of our top criminal defense attorneys.  Call us at (414) 270-0202 and let’s start fighting your case.