CA Penal Code 289

Forcible Penetration (by a Foreign Object)

Forcible Penetration in California

In California, it is a felony to forcibly penetrate another through the use of fear or force or a foreign object without their consent. This crime therefore requires sexual penetration of another by force or fear, or with a foreign object. Violators will also be required to add their name to the sex offender registry, as well.

Sex crimes can be devastating to your reputation and future, it’s best to seek counsel as soon as possible with these types of cases.


Penalties for violating California Penal Code 289 include:

  • 3, 6, or 8 years in jail; and
  • a fine of up to $10,000

Prosecuting California Penal Code 289

The prosecutor must prove:

  1. There was actual sexual penetration of another person;
  2. The penetration was accomplished either:
    • By fear or force; or
    • With a foreign or unknown object;
  3. The victim did not give consent to the penetration; and
  4. The defendant used force, violence, duress, immediate fear of bodily injury or threat of retaliation.

People that cannot legally consent to sexual penetration are often victims of this crime. This includes people who cannot consent because of a low mental capacity or intoxication.

If the victim is a minor under the age of 14, the punishment can be twelve years in prison, but even if the victim is a minor over the age of 14, the punishment can still be up to ten years. Minors are incapable of offering legal consent to sexual acts in California, so it does not matter that they participated, or “consented” on their own free will. Penetration using a foreign object is strictly illegal in these instances.

It is considered a felony if the victim is under fourteen and ten years younger than you, or if the victim is under sixteen and five years younger than you. It can be a felony or a misdemeanor in other circumstances involving a minor victim.

Defending Penal Code 289

A defense attorney is crucial in the early stages of these types of cases. A good defense attorney can argue you had consent, or reasonably believed you had consent, to engage in the sexual activity with the alleged victim. Consent is often ambiguous in sex crimes cases. It may be very challenging for the prosecution to prove there was no consent involved, especially when there are competing stories. You must be convicted by the prosecutor proving each element of the crime, including the lack of consent, beyond a reasonable doubt. If your attorney can cast some doubt as to whether there was consent or you believed there was consent, you cannot be convicted of this crime.

Further, your attorney may be able to prove there was, in fact, no sexual penetration at all. Penetration is a very low burden in sex crimes cases. This give the prosecutor a good chance of being able to show penetration occurred, regardless of whether you believe the acts committed do not reach that level. The law states that penetration means that of the genital or anal opening of another person, however slight. Forcing someone to penetrate you or themselves falls within the purview of this crime, as well. A prosecutor may be able to show you did not “force” the other person, but simply tricked them or took advantage of them while they were asleep, unconscious, or drunk. This may still result in your conviction.

False accusations are devastating to a defendant, and if your attorney can prove these accusations against you are untrue, you cannot be convicted. Having a strong alibi and evidence to support your case become vital in situations like these, because the prosecutor bears the burden of showing you were the person that committed the crime. Again, if there is doubt as to where you were during the commission of the crime, whether you were the one that committed the crime, or whether any other detail about the crime is true, you may be acquitted.

We Want to Help

If you or a loved one is being charged with Forcible Penetration (by a Foreign Object) in violation of PC 289 in California, we invite you to contact us immediately for a free case review.

Schedule an appointment to meet with us in person, or feel free to submit an evaluation online and we will get in contact with you ASAP. We can provide a free consultation in our office located in Century City, or by phone.

Our experienced and assiduous attorneys will be sure to fight until the end to reduce or drop your charges completely.

Call Us for a FREE Case Review: 310-274-6529

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