Have you been charged with a sex crime in Fort Lauderdale, Florida? “Sex crime” is a general term that refers to a range of offenses which can include: indecent exposure, statutory rape, prostitution, or solicitation. Sex crimes also define any sex act performed without consent or performed upon a person who is legally incapable of providing consent, also known as sexual battery. What are the differences between these charges? What are the penalties for these charges? And what can you do if you are facing these charges in Fort Lauderdale, Florida?
First of all, if you are being charged with a sex crime, it is important to take these charges seriously. Conviction of a sex crime can lead to jail time, fines, and consequences that can include the requirement that you be registered as a sex offender, which can have implications including the need to notify officials whenever you move, notify neighbors and landlords about your status as a sex offender, and this could impact your ability to get certain jobs. The important thing to remember if you have been arrested for a sex crime is that you are innocent until proven guilty. You have the right to remain silent and have the right to ask to speak to a lawyer if you have been arrested for a sex crime. Michael D. Weinstein, P.A. is a Fort Lauderdale, Florida sex crimes law firm that may be able to assist you with your case.
Types of Sex Crimes
Sex crimes carry with them heavy social stigma. Individuals facing these charges could have their reputations damaged and their lives changed forever. Conviction can result in jail time and consequences that can impact you for the rest of your life—like having to be registered as a sex offender. What are some types of sex crimes?
- Sexual Battery. In Florida, rape is legally referred to as sexual battery. In order to convict a person of sexual battery, the prosecution must prove that the defendant penetrated the victim orally, vaginally, or anally, or placed his or her sexual organ on the person’s mouth, anus, or vagina without the victim’s consent. The penalties for this crime will depend on the age of the victim, whether the victim was threatened with a weapon, and whether a victim was physically injured in the sexual battery.
- Indecent Exposure. When a person exposes their sexual organs in a public place, they could face indecent exposure charges. In order to face indecent exposure conviction, the prosecution must show that the person wanted to expose their sexual organs and then actually exposed their sexual organs. The prosecution must show that the defended intended to expose themselves indecently. An accidental exposure would not necessarily qualify for an indecent exposure charge (like if a bathing suit accidentally fell off at the beach). The penalties a person can face for this crime depend on where the indecent exposure took place, who was exposed indecently, and the age of the victims exposed.
- Statutory Rape. In Florida, a person can be charged with sexual battery if they engage in sexual acts with a person who is not the legal age of consent. If a person is 24 years old, and the victim is 16 or 17 years old, this could lead to sexual battery charges.
- Offering sex for sale, trying to engage another person in sex for hire, or engaging in the hiring of another person to engage in prostitution is against the law. Penalties will depend on whether a person has prior convictions, and whether minors were involved.
These are just some of the sex crimes for which a person can face charges in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The defenses for these crimes will depend on the nature of the alleged crime and the circumstances in which the alleged crime took place. If you are facing criminal charges for sex crimes in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, you have the right to remain silent, have the right to your day in court, and have the right to speak to a criminal defense law firm. If you cannot afford one, one will be appointed for you. However, public defenders often handle high caseloads. If you are facing serious criminal charges, you may want to speak to a private criminal defense lawyer like Michael D. Weinstein, P.A. today. Our attorney can take the time to review the details of your case, help you understand the charges against you and your options, and fight to help you get the best possible outcome permitted under the law.