Top Albertville, AL Sex Crime Lawyers Near You
Sex Crime Lawyers | Guntersville Office | Serving Albertville, AL
416 Gunter Avenue, PO Box 88, Guntersville, AL 35976
Albertville Sex Crime Information
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What Is a Sex Crime in Alabama?Sex crimes include a wide variety of criminal offenses. Sex crimes include sexual conduct or a sexual act motivated by sexual arousal or sexual gratification. Sex crimes may also include unlawful sexual contact or sexual activity through force or without consent. Some victims of sex crimes cannot give consent because they are impaired or under the age of consent. Possession of illegal sexual material may also be considered a sex crime, including child pornography.
What Are Examples of Common Sex Crimes?There are many types of sex crimes, including rape, sexual assault, prostitution, solicitation of a minor, lewdness, indecent exposure, statutory rape, child molestation, sexual battery, and internet sex crimes. Sex crimes can be charged as federal offenses or as state crimes. Sex crimes involving children, child pornography, or sex trafficking are often prosecuted in federal court.
Is a Sex Crime a Misdemeanor or Felony?Some sex crimes are considered misdemeanors and others are felony offenses. Some sex crimes could be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the type of offense. Sex crimes can also vary by degree (such as 1st-degree sexual assault or 2nd-degree sexual assault.) The penalties for a felony conviction are generally more severe than for a misdemeanor. Sex crime charges like public lewdness, indecent exposure, and solicitation of prostitution are often classified as misdemeanors. Misdemeanors generally have a maximum prison time of one year. More severe sex crime cases are generally tried by the district attorney as a felony. Sex crimes that are generally felony offenses include rape or aggravated sexual assault, distribution of child pornography, or child sexual abuse. Felony convictions often result in longer prison sentences and additional consequences after release.
What Are Penalties for a Sex Crime Conviction in Alabama?The penalties for a sex crime conviction depend on several factors, including the type of crime, violence involved, age of the victim, relationship between the alleged victim and the alleged perpetrator, criminal history, and other factors. The penalties for a felony sex crime could include a term of years of jail time, including up to 10 years or more. Other consequences of a sex crime could include paying restitution, mandatory counseling, and registering as a sex offender.
Will I Have to Register as a Sex Offender in Alabama?After serving the prison sentence, the person convicted may be designated as a sex offender. A sex offender has to register with law enforcement when they are released from prison, and re-register every year or if they decide to move. Failure to register as a sex offender can be a criminal offense. The sex offender registry is generally searchable by the public. Neighbors, employers, or family members could search the Alabama sex offender registration, which may include the offender’s name, photograph, address, and sexual offenses.
What Should I Do After a Sex Crime Arrest?You have rights after you are arrested and accused of sex crime allegations. Many people who are arrested for a sex crime want to cooperate with the police to explain that it is all a misunderstanding. They may even try and contact the alleged victim to talk to them about the false accusations. However, this can be a bad idea and it can hurt your criminal defense case. If you are accused of a sex crime, make sure you understand your rights and talk to a sex crimes lawyer about handling the criminal charges. A sex crimes defense lawyer can help you with legal advice and defense strategies in your criminal case.
How Can You Avoid Jail for a Sex Crime?
The key to avoiding a jail or prison sentence if charged with a sex crime is to create a strong, resilient defense alongside your legal counsel. Several common defenses deployed in reaction to sex crimes include but are not limited to mistaken identity, lack of intent (may have inadvertently exposed oneself without meaning to) and entrapment or duress (corrupting the pool of evidence against you by providing evidence of your own to show any actions were not voluntary).
In some cases, a skilled or proficient criminal defense attorney may be able to negotiate with the prosecution in order to see your charges deferred or de-escalated. In exchange for a probation program, rehabilitation, community service or other diversions, you may be able to avoid incarceration.
What to Do When Faced With a Sex Crime Charge
You should not talk to investigators and immediately hire a lawyer who aggressively represents sex crime defendants. A lawyer can protect your constitutional rights, form your defense and challenge evidence against you. If you decide not to fight, your lawyer may be able to negotiate a plea bargain.
Do You Need a Lawyer if Charged With a Sex Crime?
Yes. If you are facing charges related to sex crimes, it should be your first order of business to acquire legal representation. An experienced criminal defense attorney familiar with sex crimes can call upon standing statutes, past precedent and existing case law in order to best represent your interests.
Together, you can strategize with your attorney, working to craft the best possible defense should you decide to take the case to trial. Otherwise, your attorney can negotiate on your behalf in search of an amenable plea bargain or plea deal.
Working without professional legal advice is a surefire way to reduce your odds of acquittal, or of a beneficial plea bargain. Given the gravity of sex crime charges, and any conviction placing you on a public sex offender registry, it is highly advised that you speak to a defense attorney as soon as possible.
When to Hire a Lawyer
It is in your best interest to get legal help early on in addressing your situation. There are times when hiring a lawyer quickly is critical to your case, such as if you are charged with a crime. It may also be in your best interest to have a lawyer review the fine print before signing legal documents. A lawyer can also help you get the compensation you deserve if you’ve suffered a serious injury. For issues where money or property is at stake, having a lawyer guide you through the complexities of the legal system can save you time, hassle, and possibly a lot of grief in the long run.
The Importance of a Good Consultation
The goal of an initial consultation is to find an attorney you are comfortable working with and someone who can help you understand your options under the law. Seek to understand the relevant legal experience the attorney brings to your case. While it is not realistic to expect an attorney to resolve your legal issue during an initial consultation, you should gain a level of comfort with his/her ability to do so. A good consultation can clarify issues, raise pertinent questions and considerations for your case, and help you make an informed decision towards resolving your legal issue.
How much does it cost to hire an attorney?
In general, how much an attorney costs will often depend on these four factors: billing method and pricing structure, type of legal work performed, law firm prestige, and attorney experience. Depending on the legal issue you are facing, an attorney may bill you by the hour, settle on a flat fee, or enter into a contingency fee agreement. The type of legal work you need help with will also play a role in cost incurred.
Common legal terms explained
Personal jurisdiction – Requirement that a particular court have authority over a person, in order to bind that person to the judgment of the court, based on minimum contacts. International Shoe Co v. Washington is a landmark Supreme Court case outlining the scope of a state court’s reach in personal jurisdiction.