A Boone, NC man has been arrested after his can’t stop, won’t stop policy for spreading the word of massage through uninvited back rubs blew up in his face. Julio Antonio Yanez, despite his self image of being a modern day Don Juan, has been charged in North Carolina with two counts of misdemeanor breaking and entering and two counts of assault on a female. As alleged, Yanez would enter the homes of unsuspecting women, crawl into their bed, and begin his rub down sessions. As could be expected, despite his rugged good looks, the victims were unwilling participants in his attempted night moves. Upon entering the beds of his victims it is reported that both victims immediately ordered him to cease his caress and leave the premises immediately. Despite their demands it is alleged the walking massager continued to stroke their arms and back and persisted in his demand to tenderize their muscles. As it stands currently there are at least three women who alleged Yanez attempted his tomfoolery on them, though charges have been filed based on only two of the incidents.
In my time as an attorney there have been cases that just make me sit back in my chair and wonder what the hell is wrong with people? My job title doesn’t allow me to not look for the weaknesses in a fact scenario and assess a situation considering both sides of the coin. However, if these allegations are true as alleged, this is one of those rock back, eye roller cases. I’ve mentioned in other blogs that criminal law is generally similar from State to State and in the Federal system. Of course there are nuances in Florida that a criminal attorney practicing in Florida would know, just as there are nuances in Tennessee that a criminal lawyer in Tennessee would know. That’s just the way it is. Yanez will be charged in North Carolina with misdemeanor counts. If this is all he’s charged with, he can sleep a little easier. Were he in Florida he would no doubt be charged with misdemeanor battery for his unwanted touching of his victims. Depending on the unknown facts of his case, he may also be charged with Burglary of an occupied dwelling under Florida Statute 810.02(2)(a) if the State could prove that he entered the dwelling with an intent at the time of entry to commit a criminal offense and that offense is an assault or battery. If burglary isn’t provable Yanez would be charged with trespass in a structure, a first degree misdemeanor.
For arguments sake with respect to the burglary, a criminal lawyer applying Florida law should make the argument that there was no intent in the mind of Yanez to enter the dwelling to commit a crime. How did he know these women wouldn’t want a backrub? Stranger things have happened, and for all he knew this little incident could have turned into a fancy romance. There was no physical injury in his actions and as such an argument could be made from the side of your mouth that the lack of injury shows he lacked an intent to commit a violent crime. No property (presumably) was taken from the victims prior to his sweet caress and so there is no theft. Though it seems from the article and police’s version of the facts that he intended to touch the women against their will, I don’t know that it can be proven that he intended to commit a battery at the time of entry under Florida law. What about the touching after they shooed him away? The subsequent touching would be a battery as he was warned not to touch beforehand. Nish, Nish! However, at this point it could be argued that he was committing a trespass and a battery as again, it is difficult to show that he intended to enter the domicile to commit a crime. The lynchpin in Yanez’s case is the State’s ability to show his intent when he let himself in the door. If they can prove that he intended to grope these women regardless of their desire then he could be, perhaps, charged with burglary in Florida. If not, he’s just a trespasser, albeit a scary one.
At the end of the day, common sense may dictate that Yanez entered with the intent to touch the women regardless of their opinion on the subject. If that could be shown and if this criminal case were in Florida, he may be looking at a very serious charge. If the intent argument would hold water, his crimes would be significantly less serious. As a criminal attorney I’ve made this argument before in the case of State v. YGR, where it was shown that there was no intent on the part of my client, nor could the State prove it, to enter a premises with an intent to commit a crime. Ultimately the burglary allegation along with a theft allegation against YGR was dropped and my client pled to a much less serious allegation of trespass. Intent isn’t always as clear cut as it seems and for that reason some burglary allegations aren’t as strong as the State Attorney and Police want to let on.
If you’ve been charged with a burglary or other crime in Tampa, contact our firm today for a free consultation. We’re available from 9AM to 5PM, Monday through Friday at 813-444-7435 or at 727-771-3847.