Under Illinois criminal law, a person commits the felony crime criminal sexual assault when he or she sexually penetrates another person under several different circumstances. Those circumstances include: (1) the assailant used force or the threat of force; (2) the victim was unable to understand the act, or was not able to give his or her consent; (3) the victim was under 18-years-old and the assailant was a family member; and (4) the victim was between 13 and 18-years-old and the assailant was over 17 and held a position of trust or authority over the victim. Aggravated criminal sexual assault is sexual assault where further aggravating circumstances mandate a more severe charge. It may be a common misconception that if a victim and an assailant are romantically involved, or have been involved in the past, that a forced sexual act is not a sexual assault. However, as two stories from recent Chicago news demonstrate, a person may be charged for felony sex crimes even when he or she knows the victim personally, or was romantically involved with the victim.

According to the Chicago Tribune, a 48-year-old man from Naperville was arrested last Monday in connection with the sexual assault of a woman that he used to be involved. Patrick E. McGuire allegedly entered the woman’s home in the very early morning hours of September 13, and proceeded to sexually assault her. The woman was not injured during the assault. Mr. McGuire was taken in by authorities on Monday and was charged with aggravated criminal sexual assault and criminal trespass to residence with persons present. These are both serious felony charges. Mr. McGuire is currently behind bars at the Will County jail, and his bail was set at $200,000.

While Mr. McGuire’s story demonstrates that a person can be charged with criminal sexual assault even if they were romantically involved with the victim in the past, the second story highlights the issue of sexual assault during a dinner date. NBC Chicago reports that 49-year-old designer to the stars Elhadji Gueye, otherwise known as “Haj,” was charged with criminal sexual assault after an evening at a woman’s home. The 29-year-old woman had invited Mr. Gueye and his two daughters to her home for dinner, but Mr. Gueye came without them. After dinner, Mr. Gueye allegedly attacked the woman, and then made up a plate of the food to take home with him. According to the Chicago Tribune, the woman went to the hospital the day after the sexual assault, and then gave a statement to the Chicago police. Mr. Gueye then turned himself in to the police on Tuesday.

Mr. Gueye’s attorney says that the sex was consensual, and that the woman is attempting to extort Mr. Gueye for money. Mr. Gueye was ordered to be held on $100,000 bail, and his case is still pending.

Criminal sexual assault and aggravated criminal sexual assault are serious felony crimes that can result in long jail sentences, as well as other penalties. In addition, a sex crime conviction can lead to lifelong consequences resulting from the “sex offender” label. If you have been charged with violating Illinois criminal laws, you should immediately seek out the assistance of an experienced criminal defense attorney. Contact Goldman & Associates today for a confidential consultation.