If you live in the Bay area, you have likely seen the home video surveillance footage of the 31-year-old man who attempted to sexually assault a woman in a local grocery store and a 13-year-old girl in her own home. He has been arrested on charges of attempted sexual assault, attempted sexual assault during a burglary, false imprisonment, and assault with intent to commit a felony. His arrest was not the result of a police investigation, but because his landlord saw his image on television and called it in.
Normally, California laws concerning burglary have a specific purpose, to make it illegal to enter another person’s home or residence in order to steal from them (CA Penal Code 249). However, when sexual assault is the intent, there are different legal elements to take into account. According to burglary law, a person must intend to commit theft in order to be convicted of a burglary; however, if a sexual assault takes place, this is another matter entirely and the person may be charged with both burglary and sexual assault charges.
It is likely, therefore, that the man who entered the 13-year-old girl’s home and attempted to sexually assault her will be tried for both charges. He might spend up to 6 years in state prison and have a strike against him (California Three Strikes Law) simply for having entered the home uninvited. As for the attempted sexual assault (CA Penal Code 243.4), which makes it illegal to touch another person’s intimate parts for the express purpose of sexual gratification or for abuse (a felony charge in his case), then he may expect to spend up to 4 years in state prison and pay a $10,000 fine.