One common frustration our clients find is the amount of time it takes to get through a case involving criminal sexual conduct. Most people and their close family members become easily annoyed about the amount of time it takes to get through a case as they want to move on with their lives. Whether the case clears up by way of a favorable plea, a dismissal, or a full-blown trial, the amount of time is always much longer than any person would expect to wait. Criminal sexual conduct cases, however, are some of the most complicated types of cases with a variety of evidence that needs to be collected and analyzed.
Further, the consequences that go along with Michigan criminal sexual conduct cases are overwhelming. Many cases potentially call for long prison terms, sex offender registry, licensing consequences, and other damage to a person’s reputation. If you are facing charges of this nature, an experienced criminal sexual conduct attorney can guide you through the legal process and help you build a strong defense.
COVID’s Impact on Cases
Another issue that has recently complicated cases is the Coronavirus Pandemic. It has had a large impact on the courts, particularly throughout Oakland and Macomb County. For several months, the court could not safely conduct in-person jury trials and as a result, the court now has an extremely long backlog of cases. Now that the world is opening up a bit, we have been able to resolve some of our cases and had successful trials.
With the Delta variant, it is possible it will slow back down and bring the courts back to a halt. Further, some of the additional delay is because many courts have not made all of their courtrooms ready for trials in this post-Covid era. For example, in Oakland County, only one courtroom on each floor of the building is equipped with plexi-glass and the ability to distance people in the courtroom so it can be used for jury trials. As a result, only a fraction of the cases that used to proceed, are able to take place at one time.
Waiting for Other Cases to be Heard
Another issue that causes delay for most of our criminal sexual clients, is that they have to wait for other trials to go forward before theirs. The cases and people who are considered a priority have cases that are older or people who are sitting in jail awaiting trial. Most of our clients are annoyed but are out on bond and able to be home with their families.
Let a Dedicated Michigan Attorney Handle Your Sexual Conduct Case
Prior to Covid, the average case in our office took about a year to complete. At this moment, we are averaging about 14 to 16 months. Hopefully things continue to improve so that jury trials can continue to proceed. In many of our cases, even when we reach a resolution, it does not happen until all of the work to prepare for trial has been put in and the prosecution knows we are ready to try the case.
If you are facing charges of criminal sexual conduct in Michigan, contact our office today. We can discuss with you reasonable expectations in terms of time expectations to have as you move through the process.