Mecklenburg County Sex Crimes Lawyer
If you have been charged with a sex crime in Mecklenburg County, no one needs to tell you how the serious the situation can be. In addition to potentially severe criminal penalties such as long prison sentences and hefty fines, those convicted of many sex crimes face sex offender registration requirements that could haunt them the rest of their lives.
Even an accusation without a formal charge or conviction can have long term negative effects. So, if you are facing charges or accusations involving sex crimes, consider contacting a knowledgeable Mecklenburg County sex crimes lawyer who can help you work to minimize the negative consequences.
A dedicated criminal defense attorney could also help protect your rights and prevent you from taking actions which could make matters worse.
Penalties for Sex Crimes
The range of penalties for sex crimes is quite large, although even the least serious offenses are punishable by up a year of imprisonment. Certain offenses may be treated as relatively minor if the potential for harm to vulnerable members of society is considered low.
For instance, prostitution and indecent exposure are both treated as Class 1 misdemeanors. The maximum sentence for these offenses includes up to a year in jail and a fine of up to $2,500.
Moderately serious offenses such as possession of child pornography or carnal knowledge of an inmate in a correctional facility are considered Class 6 felonies with penalties that include as much as five years in prison in addition to a fine. A Mecklenburg County sex crimes lawyer could argue persuasively for the lowest penalty permitted under the circumstances.
Many sex crimes are treated as more serious felonies. Often these crimes are not assigned to a class, but the penalties are set forth in the statute defining the offense. Aggravated sexual battery, for instance, is described in Va. Code §18.2-67.3 and the statute explains the offense is considered a felony punishable by a minimum of one year in a state correctional facility with a maximum sentence of 20 years and a fine as high as $100,000.
Misdemeanor Sex Crimes
Virtually all sex crimes treated as misdemeanors are considered serious misdemeanors, so they are not minor offenses. Many misdemeanor sex crimes involve action with no sexual contact such as indecent exposure or obscene sexual display or sale or display of obscene items.
Other sex crimes treated as misdemeanors involve behavior between consenting adults such as prostitution, solicitation, and adultery. Some misdemeanor sex crimes may be treated as felonies if committed more than once, although an experienced sex crimes lawyer in Mecklenburg County may be able to demonstrate why a subsequent offense should be treated as a misdemeanor.
Felony Sex Crimes
Felony sex crimes often involve contact or violence against an individual. Sometimes, however, people may be convicted of a felony sex crime for their role in orchestrating the actions of others, such as in human trafficking or distribution of child pornography.
Because the criminal penalties and other consequences of these crimes are so severe, anyone charged would be wise to seek representation from a Mecklenburg County sex crimes lawyer who could start to collect evidence to prepare for defense while the best evidence is still available.
Examples of felony sex crimes include:
- Rape and attempted rape
- Sexual abuse of a child
- Forcible sodomy
- Distribution of child pornography
- Commercial exploitation of a minor
- Taking indecent liberties with children
In addition to the potential for imprisonment and large fines, a conviction for many of these crimes imposes sex offender registration requirements.
Contact a Mecklenburg County Sex Crimes Attorney Today
Even an unfounded accusation of a sex crime could ruin your life. If you are facing charges involving sexual wrongdoing of any type, it is wise to seek advice and assistance from an attorney with experience handling sex crimes.
You may rightly worry that statements taken out of context may be used against you. Actions may be misinterpreted. One false step could increase your appearance of guilt.
At times like these, guidance from an experienced Mecklenburg County sex crimes lawyer may be especially helpful. To protect your rights and start building your defensive strategy, call now.