DeKalb County Sex Crimes Lawyer
For any type of sex-related criminal offense, the consequences following a conviction could severely impact your life in irreversible ways. Not only could your professional life be in jeopardy, but your personal life and reputation could suffer serious damage as well.
You should strongly consider seeking the help of a seasoned attorney to fight for your rights if you have been charged with this kind of offense. A DeKalb County sex crimes lawyer could work to investigate and preserve evidence and build a strong defensive strategy on your behalf.
Penalties for Sex Crimes in DeKalb County
Most sex crimes are treated as felonies with the potential for penalties that include long terms of imprisonment and heavy fines. Some examples of the maximum prison sentences for different sex crimes include:
- Aggravated Sodomy – Imprisonment for life
- Statutory Rape – 20 years
- Rape – Imprisonment for life
- Child Molestation – 20 years to life
- Prostitution – 12 months
- Solicitation of sodomy involving a minor – 20 years
If the conduct involves a minor, particularly a pre-adolescent one, the penalties could be far more severe. Alternative penalties are also available for some sex crimes, though, which a DeKalb County sex crimes attorney could work to negotiate for whenever it is feasible to do so.
Defining Rape Under State Law
The crime of rape is defined under Official Code of Georgia §16-6-1 as having “carnal knowledge” of a female “forcibly and against her will.” A sex crimes lawyer in DeKalb County could evaluate the circumstances of a case to determine whether a sex crime has been appropriately charged. Many people are surprised to learn that a husband may be convicted of raping his wife, and that rape may be treated as a capital crime.
Defining Statutory Rape
Statutory rape occurs when someone engages in sexual intercourse with a person under the age of 16. It is not necessary for the prosecution to prove lack of consent in this situation, because the law determines that a person under the age of 16 cannot legally consent.
A person may not be convicted of this crime, however, based solely on the unsupported testimony of the minor involved. Additionally, O.C.G.A. §16-6-3 contains an exception decreasing the severity of the offense when both parties involved are underage. If one person aged 18 or younger engages in sex with someone who is 14 or 15, then the offense is treated as a misdemeanor.
Hiring an Experienced DeKalb County Sex Crimes Attorney
In terms of the potential criminal penalties and the collateral consequences that go along with the offense, sex crimes are something no one wants to face. If you have been accused of such a crime, however, prompt action could make all the difference in the outcome of your case.
Those who do not understand how to protect their rights may unintentionally forfeit those rights. A DeKalb County sex crimes lawyer could help you protect your rights so you can move forward with your life. If you find yourself or family member in this situation, to schedule a consultation, call now.