In the state of California, a sex crime is considered any illegal act of a sexual nature. If you are accused of committing a sex crime is extremely important that you contact a defense attorney immediately. If you wait until you are formally charged with the crime, you will have a sex offender arrest on your record which will remain regardless of whether or not the charge is dismissed, the results of which can be devastating. Sex crimes often carry a larger stigma than any other crime, and any report of a sex crime charge or arrest can severely damage your reputation.
If you are accused of any of the following, or any other sex crime, our legal team can help defend you.
A conviction of rape in the state of California carries punishments, penalties, and a stigma that can be severe and last for your lifetime. The punishment for rape in California can range between 3 and 8 years in state prison. If the alleged victim was a minor, the sentence may be between 7 and 13 years. Additionally, the repercussions of being labeled as a sex offender may never go away.
Many innocent people get wrongly accused of rape. However, there are multiple legal defenses that can help you beat charges of rape. These include:
- False accusations by the alleged victim
- Honest and reasonable belief that there was consent
- Any physical contact that actually took place fell short of actual intercourse
- Insufficient evidence
- Mistaken identity
Sexual Battery or Assault
Sexual battery, the unauthorized touching of an intimate part of another person for purposes of sexual gratification, arousal, or abuse, may be considered either a misdemeanor or a felony depending upon the nature of the act. Defenses against sexual battery and assault are similar to those for rape and can include:
- False accusations
- Consent to the act
- Insufficient evidence
California state law renders offering, engaging in, or agreeing to any acts of prostitution a crime. This means that, in the case of prostitution, these three parties may be arrested and charged: The prostitute, the customer (also known as a “John”), and when applicable, the middleman or “pimp.” Prostitution is classified as the engagement of any sexual act in exchange for money, goods, or other services.
Although prostitution is only considered a misdemeanor in the state of California, with first-time offenses carrying a maximum of 6 months in prison and/or a $1,000 fine, it is still worth it to fight the charges. Common defenses include:
- Insufficient or lack of evidence
- Mistaken identity
Indecent Exposure is a broad category of acts. Defined as showing one’s genitals to another for either your own sexual or arousal or to offend the other party, acts that you may not have considered unlawful may be included.
Being charged with indecent exposure can lead to serious repercussions. While a first offense is typically only considered a misdemeanor, a second offense may be charged as a felony and lead to a sentence of jail time. Additionally, any charge of indecent exposure can subject you to a lifetime duty of registering as a sex offender. Thus, it is extremely important to hire a skilled defense attorney in order to get the charges either reduced or dismissed entirely.
Lewd Conduct in Public
Similar to indecent exposure, Lewd Conduct in public is defined as touching your own or another’s private parts (genitalia, buttocks, or breasts) in public with the intent of sexual gratification or to offend another.
On it’s own, a charge of lewd conduct will not require you to register as a sex offender. However, lewd conduct will often times also cause you to be charged with indecent exposure, which does carry the penalty of registry as a sex offender.
Lewd Acts with a Child
In California, a lewd act with a child is defined as the touching of a minor with the intent of sexual gratification. The touch does not need to be on a sexual organ or other private area for the act to be considered lewd, in fact a touch of any area of the body, even clothed, can result in charges.
The penalties for a charge of lewd acts with a minor may vary depending on the age of the victim.
- If the child was under 14 years of age, a range of up to 8 to 16 years jail time may be sentenced, depending on if force was used and if there were repeated occurrences.
- If the child was 14-15 years of age, and the accused at least 10 years older than the victim, up to 3 years of jail time may be sentenced.
- If the minor was between 16 and 18 years of age, the case will be charged as either statutory rape or sexual battery, which may be classified as either misdemeanors or felonies, depending on the individual case.
Any questions? Contact us.