Unique Aspects of Sex Crimes in Orlando

Although there is a wide range in severity of sex offenses, they are some of the most harshly-prosecuted crimes in Florida. In addition, there is a stigma attached to them which can add an additional layer of complication. Due to the unique aspects of sex crimes in Orlando, it is highly beneficial for you to work with an understanding sex offense attorney who knows what you are up against and how you should mount a defense.

What Constitutes a Sex Crime?

There is not one statute that governs sex crimes in Florida, but rather several that describe certain crimes. The term “crime” can reference a single event or it could encompass a range of conduct over a period of time, such as possession of unlawful images.

A sex crime could refer to sexual battery, which usually involves non-consensual sexual encounter, or it could involve an offense such as traveling to meet a minor for sexual purposes. Sexual offenses in Orlando may even be labeled a cyber crime if it concerns allegations of unlawful images, communications, or solicitations, which makes them unique among other types of crimes that stem from physical contact.

Penalties for Sex Offenses

The punishments for a sex crime will largely depend on the specific offense prosecutors are charging. Penalties for a lower-level sex crime can include probation, community sanctions, sex offender probation, which is an enhanced level of probation, or a county jail sentence. The more serious and violent charges will usually result in prison time.

A third-degree felony carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison, a second-degree felony carries a maximum of 15 years in prison, and a first-degree felony has a potential for 30 years. Certain egregious charges could see someone face life imprisonment or even the death penalty.

Unique Challenges of These Charges

One aspect that makes a sex crime more challenging than any other crime in Orlando are the collateral consequences of possibly having to register as a sex offender or sexual predator on the Florida registry. Other crimes do not have this type of registry. There is a social stigma that comes from being a convicted sexual offender, as well as certain county ordinances that may restrict where someone is allowed to maintain a residence, long after they have completed their sentence.

There is also the preconceived notion that no one would make a false claim of sexual assault, despite the well documented cases where that has occurred. It is also challenging to uncover a motive for why someone would make a false accusation of sexual assault.

For cases where there is late reporting or late disclosure, there may not be any physical evidence to show that the act did or did not occur. In many other crimes, such as an assault or theft, a person will usually call 911 to report it and may be able to take advantage of physical or forensic evidence that proves what happened. That is often not available in a case where someone is alleging a sexual assault took place months, years, even decades earlier. It is particularly difficult to deal with the allegation by word alone.

The Importance of Attorney-Client Trust

It is important to have a lawyer who is familiar with the nuances and collateral consequences of defending a sex crime, and is also not afraid of the charges, the possible penalties, or the prejudice that comes with defending such serious charges.

An attorney should have extensive knowledge of the law and the various possible defenses, will not be swayed by sentiment or prejudiced during the course of the litigation, and have to resolve and perseverance to go the distance with the case.

The role of an attorney is to advocate on the client’s behalf by raising potential defenses, or in some cases, reaching inadequate sentence recommendation. An attorney cannot advocate for a defendant’s best interests unless there is an open and candid relationship between the them. The attorney should not get caught off guard or blindsided by omissions that the client failed to provide, but the client will not do that until they feel they can have full faith in that person.

Call Our Orlando Attorneys to Discuss the Unique Aspects of Your Sex Crime Charge

Do not think you can easily dismiss charges of sex crimes in Orlando, no matter the facts of the case. It is important for a skilled criminal defense attorney to start investigating the case as soon as possible, as well as building the relationship with the client early. When your freedom and reputation are on the line, reach out to The Umansky Law Firm Criminal Defense & Injury Attorneys.

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