Criminal Sexual Conduct Fourth Degree


The charge of criminal sexual conduct in the fourth degree is a misdemeanor punishable by up to two years in prison. This kind of charge is referred to as a “high court misdemeanor” because it can land you in prison and is handled by the circuit court rather than the district court.


A person may be charged with CSC4 when he or she engages in sexual conduct with another and any of the following circumstances exist:


  • the other person is between the age of 13 and 16 and the actor is 5 or more years older;

  • force or coercion was used to accomplish the contact;

  • the actor knows or has reason to know that the victim is mentally incapable, mentally incapacitated, or physically helpless;

  • the other person is related to the actor within the third degree of affinity;

  • actor is a mental health professional and the sexual contact occurs during or within 2 years after the period in which the victim is his or her client or patient and not his or her spouse; or

  • the other person is between 16 and 18 years old and the actor is a specified employee or volunteer at a school.


A conviction for CSC4 will result in either public or non-public sex offender registration depending on the circumstances of the conviction.


These charges commonly arise when one adult is accused of touching another adult inappropriately. We have handled more than one case where the accuser was intoxicated when she accused another person of touching her inappropriately. In cases where alcohol was involved, it can be very important to interview potential witnesses before their memories fade. We employ professional investigators to track down witnesses and lock in their stories.


While it is a misdemeanor, it is punishable by more than one year, which means you cannot legally possess a firearm after a conviction. For many purposes, it is considered to be a felony. You should take these allegations very seriously.


To speak with a criminal sexual conduct lawyer, call Josh Blanchard or Keeley Heath at 616-773-2945.