Dornbusch v. State

In Dornbusch v. State, 156 S.W.3d 859 (Tex. App.--Corpus Christi 2005, no pet.), the Court determined that Tex. Penal Code Section 43.25(b)'s use of the term "induce" was not unconstitutionally vague as applied to Dornbusch's alleged conduct. Id. at 867. The record showed that Dornbusch held a position of authority at the complainant's school, that Dornbusch provided the complanaint with alcohol, that he took her to a motel out of town during the school day, and that he made unsolicited sexual advances while at the motel jacuzzi. Id. Since the complainant was supposed to be at school and was, instead, miles away having consumed alcohol, the court concluded Dornbusch had put her in a position in which she found it almost impossible to deny a sexual advance. Id. Such conduct, held the court, fell within the common understanding of the term "induce." Id. The Dornbusch court concluded that the evidence established Dornbusch used persuasion and influence to bring about the complainant's sexual conduct and, thus, was legally sufficient to prove inducement. Id. at 868. The evidence was also held to be factually sufficient to support the jury's verdict. Id. The complainant's testimony that she was not offered money or grades in exchange for sexual conduct, that she was not intoxicated, that she was not threatened, and that she knowingly consented to the sexual conduct did not outweigh the evidence that Dornbusch induced the sexual conduct by putting the complainant in the above-detailed situation. Id. The statute does not require that any benefit be provided in exchange for the sexual conduct, nor does the common meaning of the term "induce" require such an exchange. Id. Similarly, neither the statute nor the generally understood meaning of "induce" requires that the inducement be verbal and explicit. Id. Dornbusch was careful to distinguish the term "induce" from the term "force." Id.