Sexual Offenses Problems | Tim Wu | January 06, 2017

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Sexual Offenses Problems

Sex Offense Problems

Note:  You can do these questions over the next two classes. In the main, these are not trick questions, but have a relatively clear answer in the statutory law.

Note 2: The answers to these questions may sometimes be at odds with what you consider wrongful or what should be a crime: the purpose of these questions is not to endorse the Penal Code's approach to sexual offenses, but to illustrate what it now covers. 

Relying only on the New York Penal Code's provisions on Sexual Offenses, what crimes, if any, have been committed?

1.   M1 and M2 get drunk together. M1 says, “I don’t want to sleep with you.” M2 claims (through a lawyer) both that he was too drunk to fully understand what M1 was saying, and could not form the requisite intent for any crime.

2. M and F go on a date that involves heavy drinking by both. Heavily intoxicated, F comes back to M’s apartment and says to him “Let’s have sex.”  They have sex.  F later says she has no memory of consenting, but says she feels that she was too intoxicated to have consented to sex.

3. M and F go out drinking. F brings M back to her apartment and says “Let's have sex.”   She brings M to her room and falls asleep.   M then has sex with F.

4.   At a college party, M, a junior, meets F who says she is a freshman at another, nearby college. They have sex. In fact, F is a 16-year old high school student.   M says he believed what she said and that, objectively, she looked at least eighteen, and that subjectively felt that she was able to converse like a freshman student.

5. F is an aspiring actress who has achieved some fame in a few films.  M, a prominent film producer, invites F to a meeting in his hotel room and says, “If you want to star in my next film, which will make your career, you need to sleep with me at least once.  Otherwise, I will destroy you in this town.”  F sleeps with M.  

6.  B agrees to a massage by A. During the massage, A touches every part of B’s body, including his genitals.  

7.  A man breaks into B’s apartment, points a gun at her dog, and says he will kill the dog unless she has sex with him. She agrees.  Afterward, he forces her to hold down her dog, and then has sex with it as well.

8. M goes on a date with F. During the date, unbeknownst to F, M's friend the bartender adds extra alcohol to F’s drinks.   Heavily intoxicated, F consents to sex.

9. M is a therapist; a devotee of Wilhelm Reich who sits behind his patients during sessions. During a session with, A feels something wet on his shoulders; he realizes that M has just ejaculated on him.

10. M and F go back to F’s apartment. F says, “You can come in, but we’re not having sex.”  Later, after a drink, F does not resist M’s advances, and appears to participate willingly in sex.

11.  M1 is world-famous heart surgeon. He tells his patient, M2, “I can save you, but if you want this surgery to go smoothly, you’ll have to give me oral sex.”   M2 agrees to the deal.  

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February 19, 2018

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Tim Wu

Professor

Columbia Law School

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