All criminal charges should be handled with great caution and legal planning, but sex crimes are of a far more sensitive nature. Sex crimes are criminal acts perpetrated for one’s sexual gratification against the will or wishes of the victim. As such, these offenses are perceived as extremely heinous, and defendants often face an uphill battle in court proceedings.
Sex crimes are often charged and penalized very harshly. It is of the utmost importance that you speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney who knows how to handle cases of sex crimes. Many sex crimes are charged as felonies that carry lengthy prison terms, and defendants are often required to register as sex offenders for years or even for life.
Talk to our Provo, UT sex crimes defense lawyers about your case as soon as possible. Our team has the skills and experience to fight your charges and defend your rights. Call Overson Law, PLLC at (801) 758-2287 and ask about a free initial case evaluation today.
How Sex Crimes Are Different from Standard Criminal Offenses in Provo, UT
There are a wide variety of crimes that a person can be charged with. Crimes against property, public order, or the government are all possible. However, crimes against other people often receive special attention, particularly violent ones. Sexual crimes are perceived as being especially severe because they are often violent and are considered massive violations of a person’s privacy and bodily autonomy. If you are charged with a sex offense, speak to our Provo, UT sex crimes defense attorneys right away.
Sex crimes are frequently lumped in with other violent offenses. Although some sex crimes are indeed physically violent, many others are not. Sex crimes may be completed through less violent means. In some cases, defendants are unaware they committed a crime because their actions were non-violent, and they might believe they had the alleged victim’s consent.
A sex crime may begin as a consensual act, but if consent is withdrawn and you do not immediately stop, your actions could become criminal. In addition, consent is not always clear. Some alleged victims claim that they did not want to consent but felt intimidated by the defendant. Other times, such as when alcohol is involved, consent is never made clear by either party, and it is not until later that a victim realizes what happened.
You can also commit a sex crime through deception. For example, tricking someone into providing consent that they would not have if they had known the truth may be a criminal act. Having sex with someone who cannot consent may also be a crime. For example, juveniles and people who are physically or mentally incapacitated are incapable of providing lawful, valid consent. Any sexual act, even if you think it is consensual, may be punished as a crime.
Penalties for Sex Crimes in Provo, UT
As there are many different sex crimes a person can be charged with, there are various types of penalties. The severity of your penalties will depend on what offenses you are charged with. Some less violent sex crimes may be charged as misdemeanors. For example, certain instances of unlawful sexual contact under Utah Code § 76-5-401.2 can be charged as Class A misdemeanors. Misdemeanor offenses are punishable by up to a year in jail at most. However, you might still have to register as a sex offender.
Many sex crimes are charged as felonies., which carry much harsher penalties. Under Utah Code § 76-5-402, rape may be charged as a first-degree felony and can be punished for as long as life in state prison. If someone convicted of rape is released from prison, they must register as a sex offender for the rest of their life. Many sex offenses carry penalties that are actually harsher than the standard penalties for similarly charged offenses. You might face longer prison terms or greater mandatory minimums.
Check with our Provo, UT sex crimes defense attorneys about the possible penalties for your charges. Sex offenses tend to be very serious, and you are likely facing significant prison time.
Will I Have to Register as a Sex Offender for a Sex Crime in Provo, UT?
Many people convicted of sex crimes must register as sex offenders under Megan’s law. The sex offender registry contains the names and information of all defendants convicted of certain sex crimes. The public may access the list, and, in some cases, sex offender information is disseminated by local law enforcement.
However, not all sexual offenses require registration. Certain less serious offenses might not qualify a defendant as a registered sex offender. It is important to check with our Provo, UT sex crimes defense attorneys about your charges to see if you might be required to register if convicted.
Different crimes may require you to register as a sex offender for different periods of time. Typically, you will either register for 10 years or for life. The more serious your charges, the more likely you will have to register for life.
Registrants must also abide by various other restrictions. For example, registered sex offenders cannot go near daycare centers, public pools, primary or secondary schools, public parks, or public playgrounds. There are also requirements to follow when relocating to a new address, even if that address is only just across town. You must also check in with local law enforcement regularly. Failure to do so could lead to additional criminal charges.
How Do I Fight Charges for Sex Crimes in Provo, UT?
Fighting your charges will depend on the specific elements of the crime you are charged with. Many sex crimes are based on a lack of consent from the alleged victim. As such, many defendants argue that they did indeed have consent from the other person before having sex. However, this is often difficult to prove as issues of consent frequently come down to “he-said-she-said.”
It may be possible to undermine the prosecution’s case by suppressing evidence. If we believe evidence seized by the police was seized in violation of your rights, we can file a pretrial motion to prevent that evidence from being presented in court.
Alternatively, if we believe that witnesses against you are dishonest, we might be able to present evidence regarding their character for untruthfulness. If a jury does not believe a witness can be honest, they are less likely to believe their testimony. Our Provo, UT sex crimes defense lawyers can help you strategize the best defense tactics for your case.
Call Our Provo, UT Sex Crimes Defense Lawyers
You need legal representation immediately if you stand charged with a sex crime. The penalties for a sex crime conviction are extremely high, and it is important that you speak with our Provo, UT sex crimes defense attorneys about your case. Call Overson Law, PLLC at (801) 758-2287 and ask about a free initial case evaluation today.