The Los Angeles Criminal Law Blog

Busfield's Sexual Battery Incident: When is Consent Consent?

To many, he is Danny Concannon from The West Wing. To Entourage fans, he was Johnny Drama's director in the faux-show Five Towns. To this blog writer, he'll always be the evil ex-secret service agent that took on Sinbad in the epic action-comedy film First Kid.

Unfortunately, to a recent date, he's simply a creepy groper. According to TMZ, Timothy Busfield was on a date at the ArcLight Cinema in Sherman Oaks with the unnamed woman. They began to make out during the movies when his hands apparently went a little too far. His date abruptly left and reported the incident to the police, accusing him of groping her breasts and genitals.

Sexual battery, here in the Golden State, is defined as touching an "intimate part" of another person without consent for the purpose of sexual gratification. It is punishable by up to six months in jail, plus a fine of up to $2,000.

Consent, obviously, would be a defense. The question is, what is the proper procedure when engaging in a little base-running in a movie theater? Obviously, there's no excuse for stealing a base, but should someone stop every 90 feet, in a crowded movie theater, and ask, "is this okay?" Might we also mention that Busfield was once in a baseball movie (hence the metaphors)?

Because there are no base-stealing signs from coaches in real life, it is probably best to take things slow and ensure that your date is comfortable with each step. Otherwise, some blogger might be forced to make thinly-veiled baseball references about you while the police dig through your personal life.

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