The consequences for a conviction for a sex crime are extremely harsh. Even an accusation, unproven, could follow your around for years to come, affecting your reputation and your ability to get jobs or housing. Sex crimes include child molestation, sexual assault, sexual battery, date rape, oral copulation, rape, pandering, solicitation, pimping, lewd conduct, and child pornography. While guilt must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt as with all crimes, sex crimes are particularly stigmatized. If you need a trustworthy Orange County sex crimes lawyer, give William M. Weinberg a call. Mr. Weinberg has close to 30 years of experience and understands how prosecutors think about and pursue these charges. He provides personalized and attentive services.Defending Sex Crimes in Orange County
Sex crimes refers to a broad category of criminal charges that includes any felony or misdemeanor involving sex. When a sex crime is charged as a felony and the prosecutor successfully obtains a conviction against you, your life will be permanently altered. You will need to disclose your conviction on job applications, and you’ll be banned from possessing a gun. In some cases, it is possible to build a strong defense or negotiate a plea deal.Child Molestation
Under Penal Code section 288, you can be charged with lewd and lascivious acts if you touch a child under age 14 with sexual intent. Sexual intent is a defendant’s intent to sexually arouse a child or sexually arouse him or herself, or a third party. Child molestation can also be charged if an offender asks the child to touch him or herself or another in a sexually arousing way. It is important to understand that every episode of touching with sexual intent can be charged as a separate count and result in longer jail time and more significant fines upon conviction.Rape
Multiple penal code sections prohibit rape. Rape can be the result of force and violence, but it can also be charged as statutory rape under PC 261.5 when someone under the age of 18 or mentally disabled is involved. Sexual battery is prohibited under PC 243.4. PC 289 prohibits nonconsensual forcible penetration with a foreign object and PC 287 forbids forcible oral copulation.
You can face harsh consequences if you are convicted of rape, including not only 8 years in jail and fines but also the requirement that you register as a sex offender for the rest of your life.What Defenses Do I Have in Orange County?
It can be challenging to determine the strongest defense strategy to fight sex crimes charges like rape or child molestation. Potential defenses our attorney could raise include:
- Consensual sex
- No sexual contact
- Honest and reasonable belief of consent
- Insufficient evidence
- False accusation
- Mistaken identity or mistaken eyewitness identification.
There are circumstances in which it may be appropriate to assert that there was a false accusation. However, society tends to believe accusers, and harsh penalties are imposed when a conviction occurs. Additionally, while consent can be argued in many cases, there are some cases, such as when a victim is underage where consent is not a valid defense. The complexity and the seriousness of these charges make it crucial to hire a criminal defense attorney who has experience defending these charges and can evaluate which potential strategy makes sense under the circumstances.
In some cases, it will be appropriate for us to negotiate and talk to the police. There are situations involving misunderstandings. However, there are also more complicated accusations that need investigation. Sometimes a witness is not credible, or circumstances exist such that evidence unreliable or inadmissible. There may be pretrial motions we can bring, and when no deal can be reached, we can defend you at trial. Mitigating factors may apply to your case and reduce your sentence; these could include mistaken belief of the legality of your actions or prior performance on probation.Consult an OC Sex Crimes Lawyer
Your freedom is significantly threatened when you’re accused of a sex crime. You need an excellent defense. Mr. Weinberg can bring more than 25 years of experience as a criminal defense attorney to develop the strongest possible defense to the charges against you. He is available for a free consultation to discuss the charges and advise you on your legal options. Contact him by filling out our online form or by calling his Irvine office at (949) 474-8008.