San Antonio Sex Crimes Attorney
Arrested? Call Attorney John J. Fox Today!
Even the mere hint of a sex crime allegation is enough to ruin someone's
reputation permanently. For this reason, it is imperative that people
who are facing these charges seek help from a legal professional as soon
as possible. Depending on the circumstances of your case and the nature
of your charges, you could be facing years behind bars, fines, and a permanent
place on the sex offender registry. The
Texas Penal Code Title 5 Chapter 21 gives detailed information regarding the charges and penalties of sex
crimes. Under the law, sexual intercourse is defined as the penetration
of the female sex organ by the male sex organ and sexual contact is touching
another person for sexual gratification. What can make these cases difficult
it that it can often come down to a case of one person's word against
the others and false allegations are unfortunately not uncommon.
Last year at the National Strategy Conference on Combating Child Exploitation,
it was stated that child pornography offenses are on the rise. This being
said, law enforcement is cracking down on suspected cases of possession
and promotion of child porn. The sad truth is that innocent people may
be accused of this offense because of the authorities' eagerness to
put a stop to these offenses. According to the
Texas Penal Code §43.26 (2007), a person can be convicted of the possession or promotion of child
pornography if they knowingly had any type of visual material of a child
under the age of 18 displayed in sexual activity. Someone who is convicted
of possession of child pornography could be charged with a second degree
felony under this law. For more information regarding charges of child
click here. Consult a San Antonio criminal defense lawyer if you have any questions!
Under the law, a child cannot give consent to any type of sexual contact.
This being said, any sexual conduct towards a child is considered
child molestation or child sexual abuse. Molestation includes a broad category of crimes
including indecency with a child and improper relationship between an
educator and a student. Indecency with a child is committed by an adult
against a child that is under the age of 17, regardless of the sex. This
could include exposing the private parts of the child or the offender
or touching the child inappropriately. If the adult was only three years
older than the child at the time of the offense and did not use force,
this could be an affirmative defense. Also, if the adult was married to
the child at the time, this too is an affirmative defense. If not, this
offense can be charged as a second degree felony or a third degree felony,
depending on the severity of the case.
Sex Offender Registration
The Texas Department of Public Safety operates a
sex offender registry for all sex offenders in the state. The reason the Texas Sex Offender
Registration Program was created was in order to protect the public and
make them aware of sex offenders who live near them. Any adult or juvenile
who was convicted of a sex offense will be required by local law enforcement
to register in their own particular county. The registry will have a photograph
of the offender, their name, their address, and the details of the crime
they were convicted to. This is not a once-off procedure, but they will
have to report to the police station intermittently in order to ensure
that the information the Department of Public Safety has is accurate and
up-to-date. There are several databases this information will be stored
on and the public will be able to access any of them in order to find
sex offenders in their neighborhood.
Sex with a Minor
In Texas, the age of consent to have sexual intercourse is 17. If an adult
engages in any form of sexual contact with a child under the age of 17,
they could be accused of a
sex with a minor. It is important to know, however, that if you were less than three years
older than the individual at the time of the offense, this could be an
affirmative defense. If you are found guilty of inappropriate sexual contact,
however, and the individual is more than three years their senior, they
could be charged with a second or third degree felony. What makes this
offense so complex is the fact that a boyfriend or girlfriend could be
accused of this offense if the person they are in a relationship with
is more than three years their junior.
Child Sexual Abuse
child sexual abuse different from other types of sex crimes is the frequency of the assaults.
According to Section 21.02 regarding the continuous sexual abuse of a
young child or children, if the abuse took place over a period of thirty
days or more and committed more than one instance of abuse. It also takes
into account the age of the victim and the abuser. The abuser had to be
17 years or older at the time and the child had to be 14 years of age
or younger. The types of abuse include sexual assault, sexual performance
by a child, trafficking, prostitution, indecency with a child, and more.
This offense is classified as a first degree felony and you could be put
in prison anywhere from 25 years to life if you are convicted.
If you are facing sex crime charges it is imperative to
contact a San Antonio sex crime attorney from our firm right away to ensure that your rights are protected!