Sex Crimes Involving Minors
Children are one of society’s most precious resources, and the impact of sexual assault on a minor can have a profound impact on the rest of their life. As a result, police, prosecutors and judges take sex crimes involving minors very seriously. However, just because the government brings these charges doesn’t mean that they are based in reality. Minors don’t make good historians, they are prone to exaggeration, and many do not understand the impact that false or misleading testimony can have. The result is that many of these charges proceed on thin—and questionable—evidence. However, given the severity of the consequences you face if convicted, you cannot risk even a minor misstep when defending against these allegations. At Guest and Gray, we aggressively defend individuals facing sex crimes involving minors. For more than a decade, our Forney criminal defense lawyers have been standing up for the rights of clients accused of these serious crimes.Types of Sex Crimes Involving Minors
Texas has several laws specifically geared towards protecting minors from sexual assault and other sexual conduct. Notably, consent is irrelevant in most of these offenses because, under Texas law, a minor cannot consent to sexual conduct.
- Continuous sexual assault of a child;
- Online solicitation of a minor;
- Compelling prostitution of a child under 18;
- Sale, distribution, or display of harmful material to minor;
- Possession of child pornography;
- Promotion of child pornography (creation, distribution, or sale);
- Sexual assault of a minor;
- Statutory rape;
- Indecency with a child; and
- Prohibited sexual conduct.
Often, prosecutors will charge someone they believe to have committed a sex crime against a child with multiple offenses. Prosecutors do this for two reasons. First, to hedge their bets and to give jurors a way to find a defendant guilty of a lesser offense if the prosecution’s evidence of the lead charge is speculative. Second, prosecutors know that defendants facing effective life sentences for child sex crimes may be more willing to accept a plea agreement to a lesser offense. Thus, while the fact the government charged you with multiple offenses may give you the feeling like you don’t have a chance, that is not the case.Punishments for Sex Crimes Involving Minors in Texas
The punishments for child sex crimes vary widely; however, most of these offenses are felonies and carry lengthy presumptive terms of imprisonment. In fact, it is exceptionally rare—if not unheard of—for someone to be found guilty of a child sex offense and avoid jail time. In addition, those convicted of sex crimes against minors will very likely need to register as a sex offender—possibly for life. Given the seriousness of these sentences, everything must be done to avoid a guilty verdict.Possible Issues in Child Sex Crime Cases
While it may feel overwhelming facing a child sex crime, in reality, these offenses are like any other in that there are many available defenses. You are innocent until proven guilty and, while you cannot ignore the stigma that comes along with being charged with these offenses, stigma alone is not enough for a jury to find you guilty.
The fact of the matter is that child sex cases can be difficult to prove for the government. Children generally make terrible witnesses. While courts make some allowances that make it easier for children to testify in some cases, a child must be deemed competent to testify before a jury can hear their testimony. Even if a child is legally competent, their stories often do not make a lot of sense once a skilled criminal defense attorney digs into the case. Common issues in child sex cases include the following:
- A child’s inability to provide an accurate date range for the alleged criminal conduct;
- Delayed reporting;
- Questions about a child’s credibility;
- A child’s competency to testify in court;
- A lack of witnesses; and
- Potential bias on the part of the child’s parents or family members.
The bottom line is that you cannot give up hope just because you’ve been charged with a serious crime. Instead, reach out to a skilled Forney criminal defense attorney for immediate assistance.Contact the Child Sex Offense Lawyers at Guest & Gray Today
At Guest and Gray, we provide aggressive, top-notch representation to clients facing serious child sex charges. When it feels like the world is against you, we’re here for you. Our experienced litigators have decades of experience, including many years serving as prosecutors, handling high stakes sex crimes. We will provide you with the defense you need, deserve, and are entitled to. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation with a Forney criminal defense lawyer, give us a call at (972) 564-4644 today. You can also reach us through our online form. We proudly represent clients in Dallas, Collin, Kaufman and Rockwall Counties.