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New York Penal Law § 135.61 – Coercion in the Second Degree

Dedicated Criminal Defense Lawyers Representing Clients Charged with Making Sex-Related Threats

Coercion in the Second Degree is a more serious version of Coercion in the Third Degree that prohibits someone from coercing another person into engaging in sexual intercourse, oral sex, or anal sex. Coercion in the Second Degree is a Class E felony.

The Elements of Coercion in the Second Degree

The elements of Coercion in the Second Degree are:

  1. The defendant:
    1. Compelled another person to engage in sexual conduct, including oral or anal sex; and
  2. The defendant’s actions created a fear in the victim that the defendant would:
    1. Hurt another person;
    2. Damage another’s property;
    3. Commit a criminal offense;
    4. Accuse another person of a crime;
    5. Expose a secret that subjected another person to hatred, contempt or ridicule;
    6. Cause a strike, boycott or other action of a collective labor group that hurt another’s business;
    7. Testify, provide information, or refuse to do so;
    8. Use or abuse a position as a public servant;
    9. Perform any other act that doesn’t benefit the defendant but is calculated to materially harm another person; or
    10. Report another person’s immigration status or suspected immigration status.
Examples of Coercion in the Second Degree

Unlike Coercion in the Third Degree, the ways to commit Coercion in the Second degree are quite limited, as they all involve compelling another person to have sex with the actor or a third party. Thus, a few examples of Coercion in the Second degree include:

  • A man tells his ex-girlfriend that, unless she agrees to have sex with him, he will release nude pictures of her that he took during their relationship.
  • A pimp informs a sex worker that if she refuses work, he will report her to Child Protective Services;
  • A woman tells her ex-boyfriend that unless they resume their sexual relationship, she will report him to the immigration authorities.
Related Offenses to NY Penal Law § 135.61

Often, prosecutors bring Coercion in the Second Degree charges along with one or more of the following:

  • Coercion in the Third Degree – N.Y. Penal Law § 135.60
  • Coercion in the First Degree – N.Y. Penal Law § 135.65
  • Corrupt Use of Position or Authority – N.Y. Penal Law § 200.56
  • Unlawful Collection Practices – N.Y. Penal Law § 190.50
  • Bribery in the Third Degree – N.Y. Penal Law § 200.00
  • Bribery in the Second Degree – N.Y. Penal Law § 200.03
  • Bribery in the First Degree – N.Y. Penal Law § 200.04
What Are the Defenses to Coercion in the Second Degree?

There are several defenses to Coercion in the Second Degree that can either reduce your sentencing exposure or result in the prosecution withdrawing the case against you or the jury returning a “not guilty” verdict. The most common defenses include the following:

  • You did not specifically demand the alleged victim engage in any type of sexual conduct;
  • The alleged victim agreed to have sex with you independently of any requests on your part;
  • There was no connection between the sexual conduct and any requests you made; or
  • Despite any demand for sex you made, the victim did not acquiesce.
What Are the Penalties for Violating NY Penal Law § 135.61?

Coercion in the Second Degree is a Class E felony. In New York, Class E felony offenses are punishable by up to four years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000.

Are you Facing Coercion Charges in New York?

If you were recently charged with Coercion in the Second Degree, there is a tremendous amount at stake. However, there are also strong defenses to Coercion offenses, especially those involving allegations of coercing another to engage in sexual conduct. At Tilem & Associates, P.C., our New York coercion lawyers have extensive experience defending the rights of clients who found themselves in situations very similar to the one you’re in right now. We take an aggressive approach and leave no stone unturned as we scour the evidence to create a compelling defense on your behalf. We are immediately available to meet with you to get started working on a compelling defense to the charges you face. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation today, call 877-377-8666. You can also reach us through our online contact form.

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