Phoenix Sex Crime Lawyer
If you’re the subject of a criminal investigation, it’s in your best interest to immediately, and consult with an Arizona sex crime lawyer. Arizona’s Department of Public Safety has reported that there were about 14,500 sex offenders in the state in 2012. Sexual offenses are widely considered to be particularly heinous. Because the mere mention of a sex crime evokes a negative emotional response, a simple accusation of committing one is often enough to cause friends and family alike to turn their backs on you. But an accusation is not the equivalent of a conviction—far from it. You have the right to be considered innocent in the eyes of the law unless you’re proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
You Deserve a Vigorous Defense Against Sex Crime Allegations
At the Law Office of Howard A. Snader, we defend our clients against a wide variety of sex crime allegations. Arizona’s laws prohibit a wide variety of sexual activities. They include:
- Rape and sexual assault: forced, non-consensual sexual activity between two people. This can involve either physical violence or threats. Both men and women can face rape charges.
- Sexual exploitation of a minor: these crimes cover a wide variety of sexual offenses involving children, from distributing pornographic materials involving minors to luring a child. Unfortunately, many people face wrongful charges of sexual exploitation because of honest mistakes while searching the Internet or reading email.
- Child molestation: sexual conduct involving a child under the age of 15. While this is a very serious crime, molestation charges are sometimes unsubstantiated or made by unreliable or biased sources, such as an ex-spouse during a custody battle.
- Child pornography: creating, distributing, or possessing pornographic material involving a child is a criminal offense. While the Internet has made child pornography prosecution more common, there are legitimate defenses to these charges.
Other charges might involve prostitution, public sexual indecency, and indecent exposure.
To prove their case, prosecutors must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you committed the crime as Arizona law defines it. This isn’t a simple matter — and a vigorous defense is vital. A sex crime lawyer can help you build a robust defense, identifying weaknesses in the prosecution’s claims and disputing their interpretation of the facts.
Avoid the Stigma of a Sex Crime Conviction
Regardless of your legal right to be presumed innocent, when the crime you’re accused of is sexually based, you may feel as if you’ve been tried and convicted in the court of public opinion, without the benefit of a trial. Facing accusations of a sex crime may feel like your worst nightmare, but receiving a conviction of one is worse. If you are convicted as a sex offender, you will be required to register wherever you live. Your name, photo, address, and a description of your charges will be public information, readily available for the world to view on the Internet and various other places. As a registered sex offender, the law may keep you from living in certain areas and prohibited you from certain types of employment, and you will carry the stigma of a sex crime conviction with you for the rest of your life.
Additionally, you might face an extensive criminal sentence, including jail time and financial penalties. Under Arizona law, sex crimes carry mandatory prison terms without the option of early release. Without help from an experienced sex crime lawyer, you might face:
- Rape and sexual assault: between five and 14 years in prison
- Sexual conduct with a minor: 13 years of incarceration to a life sentence, depending on the circumstances surrounding the crime
- Child molestation: your sentence will vary depending on the age of the child. If the alleged victim is 12 or older, you might receive 10 to 24 years in prison. If the child was under the age of 12, you will face between 35 years and a life sentence
- Child pornography: 10 to 24 years per violation. Because each image or file is considered a separate violation, you might face a lifetime in prison– if convicted.
In addition, you might have extensive probation requirements and could face scrutiny from Child Protective Services if you are a parent.
False Allegations of Sex Offenses
In some cases, the allegations are entirely false. Sex crimes usually take place behind closed doors, with no witnesses present. An arrest may be made simply on the basis of an uncorroborated accusation. Such accusations could have an ulterior motive, such as revenge for infidelity or some other offense in a relationship, or the desire of one divorcing parent to gain sole custody of a child by discrediting the other with an accusation of a sex crime.
Because the far-reaching negative consequences of a sex crime conviction, you need to bring a legal specialist on board at the first indication that you might be facing an accusation. Sometimes people delay in hiring legal counsel because they feel embarrassed to talk to an attorney because of the nature of the charges. But it is important to have a good criminal defense lawyer by your side whenever someone is questioning you. It can make all the difference in the outcome of your case.
What Should I Do if I’m Facing Sex Crime Allegations?
During a sex crime investigation, it’s easy to feel isolated and afraid, even when the claims are false or exaggerated. At the Law Office of Howard A. Snader, a sex crime lawyer can help you regain control and fight back. If you believe you are a suspect in a criminal investigation you should:
- Don’t discuss the allegations. Unless your lawyer is present, you should not make statements about the alleged incident to law enforcement authorities, child protective services, or other parties.
- Collect your evidence. If you have proof that you were somewhere else at the time of the incident or any other important evidence that disputes the victim’s allegations, you should keep it in a safe place.
- Identify potential witnesses. This might include people who witnessed the events surrounding the alleged crime, character witnesses, and others with insight into the allegations.
- Stay away from the alleged victim. When someone wrongfully accuses you of a sex crime, you have every right to be angry and upset. However, you should never contact your accuser or their family. Instead, your sex crime lawyer can help you build up your defenses and help you properly investigate the situation.
- Immediately contact a sex crime lawyer. Sex crime defenses are highly technical. Without guidance from an experienced sex crime lawyer, you can easily make mistakes that can cost you your freedom and reputation.
Possible Defenses to a Sex Crime Accusation
These are some of the defenses that your sex crime lawyer might be able to raise in your behalf:
- You have an alibi, proving you were elsewhere when the crime took place.
- You lack the physical ability to perform the act of which you’ve been accused.
- The victim made a mistake in identifying you as the perpetrator.
- Your accuser (assuming that person was not a minor, mentally impaired, unconscious, or intoxicated) consented to sex with you.
Other factors, such as mental incapacity, might help you argue for leniency in your sentence or help you reduce your charges to a lesser offense.
At the Law Office of Howard A. Snader, we treat all of our clients with respect. We’ll listen to your side of the story. We will also build a defense strategy based on the facts, legal precedent, and your long-term goals. We’ll help you understand your legal rights and options, empowering you to make educated decisions about your case. And when it’s necessary, we retain experts that can dispute the claims of witnesses and assess the accuracy of the prosecution’s forensic data.
Choose a Top Rated Arizona Sex Crime Lawyer for Your Defense
If you’ve been accused of a sex crime in Phoenix, Scottsdale, or anywhere in Maricopa County and beyond, or believe you are about to be, you can find experienced and specialized legal representation by calling the law offices of Board Certified Criminal Law Specialist Howard A. Snader.
Howard understands that just because you are facing an accusation does not mean you are necessarily guilty. Regardless or the nature of the crime you are facing accusations of, you have the right to the presumption of innocence and to have the representation of the best lawyer you can find. He will investigate the allegations, examine police procedure, and interview witnesses. He will also look for possible motivations for your accuser to have lied, and identify weaknesses in the prosecution’s case.
Experience Matters: Consult With a Sex Crime Lawyer Today
You should never handle your criminal defense without a skilled sex crime lawyer by your side. Maricopa County’s nationally acclaimed Sex Crimes Bureau consists of a team of specially trained prosecutors who vigorously pursue convictions in sex crime cases, including sexual abuse of children and adults, sex trafficking, child pornography, child prostitution, and internet sex crimes.
As a former prosecutor, Howard has the experience and knowledge of the criminal justice system to know what works. He will use every means at his disposal to spare you from the worst consequences of a sex crime conviction. He can sometimes even prevent charges from being filed, if you bring him on board very early on. If charges have already been filed, he is often able to have them dismissed or reduced. If you are prepared to go to trial to prove your innocence, Howard is a superb trial lawyer who is at his best in the courtroom, where he has won numerous acquittals for his clients in jury trials. He has an outstanding record of obtaining the best available outcomes for thousands of clients accused of various types of crimes, including sex crimes. He has also earned the highest possible AVVO rating—10 (Superb).
A delay in obtaining counsel could be lethal. Call Howard Snader now to protect and preserve your rights, your reputation, and your freedom.