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Secrets of the Texas Criminal Justice System and Your Rights
When you are accused of committing any crime, it can be crucial to obtain legal representation as quickly as possible. Allegations of sex offenses are no exception, as the consequences of a conviction on one of these charges could be severe and life-altering. If you have become the target of these allegations, you may wish to speak with an El Paso sex crimes lawyer right away.
While you are presumed innocent until in a court of law, your reputation may come under attack as soon as you are accused. With the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney, you may be able to fight back against these charges and clear your name.
Sex Crimes Under The Statute
Some sexually-based criminal offenses concern only minors, whereas others could involve both minors and adults. Some common offenses that involve minors may include continuous sexual abuse of young child or children, which is a first-degree felony, and indecency with a child, which is a second or third-degree felony. This may depend on the specific situation. Conviction on these offenses could result in substantial terms in prison and mandatory sex offender registration.
Other types of sexually-based criminal offenses include public lewdness, indecent exposure, invasive visual recording, and voyeurism. Prostitution and promotion of prostitution also involve sexual behaviors in some cases. While these offenses tend to be misdemeanors, notably for a first offense, some may constitute felonies if they involve minors or individuals with multiple previous convictions.
Higher-Level Offenses in El Paso
Most higher-level sexually-based offenses have severe punishments upon conviction. This could include mandatory sex offender registration, which may impact a person for many years. One of the more common offenses in El Paso is sexual assault or rape, as defined by Tex. Pen. Code § 22.011. This offense occurs when persons have sexual contact or penetration with others without their consent. This also happens when the targets of the assault are minors, regardless of their consent.
Sexual assault is typically a second-degree felony. Conviction on a second-degree felony offense could result in a prison sentence ranging from two to 20 years and a maximum fine of $10,000. Since a sexual assault is necessarily a crime of violence, a conviction for this offense could have detrimental effects. In this case, consulting a sex crimes attorney in El Paso may be vital.
When Charges Are Considered Aggravated
Sexual assault could become a first-degree felony offense when the circumstances rise to the level of aggravated sexual assault. Some of the situations that might qualify a sexual assault as aggravated sexual assault under Tex. Pen. Code § 22.021 may include:
- Causing serious bodily injury to others
- Threatening to inflict severe physical injuries, cause death, or subjecting others to criminal offenses
- Using or brandishing a deadly weapon
- Assaulting individuals who are elderly, disabled, or under the age of 14
Aggravated sexual assault is a first-degree felony, which may result in a prison sentence of five to 99 years, or even life in prison. In some cases involving minors as the subject of the assault, the mandatory minimum prison sentence can be as much as 25 years. Given the potential severity of an aggravated sexual assault conviction, anyone facing allegations should consult an El Paso sex crimes lawyer for guidance.
Consult an El Paso Sex Crimes Attorney
The implications of a sex offense conviction may be devastating for your personal and professional life. Building a strong defense to these charges with the help of an El Paso sex crimes lawyer may be the only way to reach the most positive resolution possible.
Do not allow others to prejudge you before you have had the chance to defend yourself. With a strong legal advocate to assist you, you may be able to explore your options and achieve a more positive outcome in your case. Contact an attorney today to get started.