Sex offenses are some of the most serious accusations that a person may face in an Arizona criminal court. These charges can range in severity from misdemeanors such as indecent exposure to instances of alleged sexual assault or molestation of a child.
Anyone facing potential sex crimes charges must take aggressive steps to protect themselves. Even a first conviction can result in significant penalties that can include harsh fines and lengthy prison sentences. The potential punishments become even more severe if you have a prior criminal record.
An Arizona sex crimes lawyer can help you to avoid these outcomes. The dedicated defense team at Grand Canyon Law Group will stand by your side to understand your story, evaluate the legality of police work, discover evidence that helps your case, and protect your rights and freedoms during every court session. Reach out today to schedule your confidential consultation.
According to state law, a sex crime is any incident whereby a person engages in unlawful sexual activity. At the lower portion of the range, this can include subjecting another to offensive or alarming sexual conduct.
Arizona Revised Statute § 13-1402 describes indecent exposure as exposing one’s genitals, anus, or breasts when another is present while being reckless about causing alarm or offense. A first-offense indecent exposure charge is usually a misdemeanor.
More serious are allegations of sexual abuse. These cases allege engaging in sexual contact with any person over the age of 15 without that person’s consent. Sexual abuse is a class 5 felony under state law. If the alleged victim, however, is under age 15, then sexual abuse becomes a class 3 felony and is punishable as a dangerous crime against a child.
Sexual assault charges are among the most serious that can be charged in Arizona. Under state law, sexual assault is described as engaging in sexual intercourse or oral sex with another without their consent. This offense is a class 2 felony, but a variety of factors may increase the severity of the charge. An Arizona sex crimes attorney can provide more information about sex charges under state law and what the prosecutor needs to prove to secure a conviction.
Allegations involving sex crimes can result in severe punishments upon conviction. Even a conviction for a misdemeanor such as indecent exposure authorizes a court to fine a person up to $2,500 and sentence them to up to six months in jail.
For all cases that count as felonies, the penalties quickly become much harsher. In situations where the offense does not involve violence, courts count these incidents as non-dangerous offenses. Under AZ Rev. Stat. § 13-702, mitigating factors may result in a prison sentence of as little as six months for class 5 felonies such as sexual abuse. Mitigating factors can include the defendant’s age, acceptance of fault for the incident, and remorse.
On the other hand, a series of aggravating factors may also apply. These can include the presence of an accomplice, whether the defendant committed the offense for money, or the status of the alleged victim as a senior citizen. For class 5 felonies, aggravating circumstances may lead to a sentence of up to two years and six months imprisonment. It is essential to remember that these guidelines apply only to first-time offenders. Subsequent convictions will result in enhanced prison sentences.
Separate guidelines govern sentencing for convictions under the sexual assault laws. Here, even a first offense for a person with no prior criminal history will carry a minimum sentence of five years and three months. A maximum penalty can result in a sentence of 14 years. These penalties can change your life forever. A skilled local attorney can work to ensure that you have the best chance possible at reducing your charges and minimizing penalties.
Every allegation involving sex crimes is a serious matter. Even misdemeanors such as indecent exposure can result in the payment of fines and time in jail. Harsher charges alleging forced sexual contact are felonies where first-time offenders could still end up in prison.
An Arizona sex crimes lawyer can help you to fight back. We can perform an independent investigation into the incident and form a defense to protect your rights in and out of court. State sentencing laws are complicated, so we can also work with you to make sure you understand the potential outcomes you are facing.
Every moment is vital when facing allegations of sexual misconduct. At Grand Canyon Law Group, we know that your time is precious, especially at a time like this. Call today so that we can get to work for you right away.