Orlando Sex Crimes Lawyer
For some crimes, the allegation alone can ruin your life. This is the case with sex crimes. Being charged with a sex crime can cause serious damage to your reputation, life, and livelihood. If you’re convicted, you could face prison, fines, probation, and the humiliation of being labeled a sex offender or sexual predator on Florida’s offender registry.
The time to contact a sex crime defense lawyer is the day you discover that you’re being targeted in a sex crimes investigation, whether you’ve been arrested or not. Sex crime cases can be complex, but talking to a sex crimes attorney can be the difference between a conviction and an acquittal.
Sexual Offenses in Florida
Like most states, the penalties for sex crimes are particularly harsh — especially regarding crimes like sexual battery or any sex offense involving a child. Here are some of the most common types of sex-related crime and their level of offense under Florida law.
- Indecent Exposure – Indecent exposure means being naked in public in a vulgar or indecent manner. First-degree misdemeanor.
- Sexual Battery – oral, anal, or female genital penetration by, or union with, the sexual organ of another or the anal or female genital penetration of another by any other object. Sexual battery is categorized according to age and other factors:
- Defendant is over 18 years old, and the victim is less than 12 years of age – First-degree felony not to exceed life in prison
- Defendant is under 18 years old, and the victim is more than 12 years of age – First-degree felony
- Defendant is over 18 years old, and the victim is also over 18 years of age without violence likely to cause serious personal injury – Second-degree felony
- Defendant is over 18 years old, and the victim is over 12 but under 18 years of age – First-degree felony
Enhanced penalties exist when the victim is helpless to resist, the offender threatens the victim, the offender drugs the victim, the victim is mentally defective by the Florida definition, the victim is incapacitated, or the offender is a law enforcement officer, corrections officer, or probation officer.
- Child Pornography – Possession or transmitting child pornography — content that depicts minors — to another person within the state of Florida – Third-degree felony.
- Solicitation of a Minor – Seducing, luring, or enticing a minor – Third-degree felony. If the purpose is to engage in sexual conduct, it’s a second-degree felony.
- Prostitution – Offering or accepting money in exchange for sex – Second-degree misdemeanor for a first conviction; first-degree misdemeanor for a second conviction; third-degree felony for a third or subsequent conviction.
This is by no means an exhaustive list of Florida sex crime charges. Furthermore, there is an extensive list of federal crimes that you can be charged with if you cross state lines, the alleged victim crosses state lines, or you use the internet to commit crimes.
Florida Sex Crime Penalties
Sex crime penalties follow the standard maximum punishments for their categorization by their classification as a misdemeanor or felony in the state of Florida or their classification under federal sex crime guidelines with a very important exception. If you’re convicted on sex crime charges, you will become a registered sex offender or registered sexual predator. That means you will have to follow the rules of the Florida sex offender registry and notify officials when you move. It may also affect your ability to live near a school, park, or other places that children frequent.
In Florida, these are the jail/prison terms for each level of offense:
Sex Crime Misdemeanor Charges
- Second-Degree Misdemeanor – Up to 60 days in county jail.
- First-Degree Misdemeanor – Up to 1 year in county jail
Sex Crime Felony Charges
- Third-Degree Felony – Up to 5 years in state prison
- Second-Degree Felony – Up to 15 years in state prison
- First-Degree Felony – Up to 30 years in state prison
Federal Sex Crime Charges
Federal sex crimes can be charged instead of state charges or along with state charges. The state may have jurisdiction over one part of your defense, but the federal prosecutors have jurisdiction over another. This frequently happens with internet sex crimes, where the offender and victim are in different states. There are no misdemeanor federal sex crimes and prison times tend to be five years or greater.
Whether you’ve been charged at a state or federal level or both, you need a law firm that has extensive experience in sex crimes at all levels. In Orlando, sex crimes defense attorney Rahul Parikh of Parikh Law, P.A. represents individuals who are charged with sex offenses, like sexual assault, statutory rape, and other criminal charges. Attorney Rahul Parikh believes that individuals facing sex crime charges are entitled to a strong defense, like anyone else facing legal issues. Call our Orlando, Florida law firm today for a confidential consultation.
How an Orlando Sex Crime Lawyer Can Help
If you’ve been accused of a sexual crime, you should be aware that there is no one-size-fits-all sex crime strategy. Every case is different. However, there are things that an experienced sex crime defense attorney will examine to help build a legal strategy.
Examination of the Prosecutorial Case
Your attorney has the right to examine any evidence that the prosecution intends to use against you, including the testimonial evidence of the victim. They also can subpoena and depose the alleged victim and witnesses before going to trial. Oftentimes, victim statements are inconsistent, which can cast doubt on the case.
Additionally, many sex crime cases hinge upon DNA evidence. However, the collection procedures for DNA samples are exacting. Any mistakes made by the investigators may lead to a suppression of evidence. These are just a few things that our legal team will examine when preparing your defense.
Protect Your Legal Rights
Many people are aware of their legal rights but don’t realize when they’re allowing them to be trampled on. For example, they attempt to talk their way out of criminal charges by talking to the police or prosecutors. What they don’t realize is that Orange County prosecutors are highly experienced when it comes to sex crimes, and even an innocent remark from the defendant can provide them with a valuable piece of information. If you hire our Orlando, Florida law firm, we’ll deal with the Orange County State Attorney’s Office on your behalf.
Negotiate Plea Deals
Many Orlando sex crime lawyers lead their clients to believe that they can beat their charges regardless of the evidence. This is just not realistic in all cases. If you hire our Orlando sex crimes defense law firm, we will take a thorough look at the evidence against you before deciding on a solid legal strategy. In some cases, however, discussing plea offers from the state attorney’s office is worthwhile.
Ultimately, you’ll need to make the final decision, but sometimes, the plea bargain is the safer route.
Removal from the Sexual Offender Registry
One of the most damaging consequences of being convicted of a sex crime is sex offender registration. Unfortunately, getting removed from the sex offender registry is very difficult, and only certain crimes and criminal defendants are eligible. To petition to be removed from the registry, you must meet the following qualifications:
- Your conviction was for sexual battery, lewd and lascivious conduct, sexual performance by a child, or computer porn.
- You were no more than four years older than the alleged victim.
- You have not been charged or convicted of any of the above-listed crimes since the conviction that put you on the list.
- The act was consensual.
- Your crime does not conflict with federal law.
Orlando sex crimes lawyers have had some success with removal if their client qualifies.
Frequently Asked Questions About Florida Sex Crimes
If you’ve been charged with a sex crime or know that you’re under investigation for one, you need to act quickly. You can ask questions specific to your case in your initial confidential consultation. Here are some of the most commonly asked sex crime questions.
Is there a way to stay off the offender registry?
The best way to keep your name off this list is to beat your charges. If you are negotiating a plea with the Orange County prosecutor’s office, your Orlando sex crimes defense attorney can try to negotiate to keep your name off the registry.
How do I find a good sex crime defense law firm?
With so much at stake, finding a sex crimes defense firm in Orlando, FL may seem like a daunting task. At the very least, you need a criminal defense lawyer who has extensive experience in criminal defense for sex crimes. Additionally, you want to ensure they have logged plenty of hours in the courtroom if that’s where your case winds up. Orlando Sex Crime Lawyer Rahul Parikh provides diligent defense for individuals whose freedom is in jeopardy.
A Lawyer You Can Count on to Provide a Serious Defense
For years, our law firm has provided aggressive criminal defense for individuals charged with all levels of crimes, from misdemeanors to capital felonies. Whether you’ve been charged in Orange County, another Florida county, or for a federal crime, Rahul Parikh will provide the best criminal defense available. Call today!