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LOS ANGELES SEX CRIMES LAWYER
Sex crimes are a very hot button issue.  Despite representing a small percentage of crimes that make their way to court, crimes involving sex draw a lot of attention.  Just consider the popularity of television shows like Law and Order: Special Victims Unit.  These shows make law enforcement officers and prosecutors look like champions of justice, fighting against the worst human beings in our society.  Not to mention the slimy image they project onto defense attorneys.

In reality, sex crimes are much different than how they are portrayed on television.  As little as 5% of all rape cases involve the scary, "stranger-rape" scenario.  Much more often, consent is a murky issue, clouded by alcohol and other drugs.  False accusations are not uncommon and very harsh sentences can be improperly imposed on good people.  Detectives who investigate sex crimes and the prosecutors who prosecute them have a highly difficult job in front of them.  Often, the only witnesses are the alleged victim and alleged perpetrator, and their stories will contrast.  There truly are many motives for false accusations, but police do not want to call an accuser a liar.  Still, arresting and charging someone for a serious felony solely on the basis of another's accusation is dangerous.  Anyone charged with a sex crime in California needs an aggressive, passionate and skilled attorney on their side.

It is for this reason that sex crimes, more than any other, require early intervention by a criminal defense attorney.  The detectives and prosecutors do have an interest in ascertaining the truth, but are still driven to arrest and convict.  These people will not advocate on behalf of an accused rapist.

PC 261 - Rape
In California, rape is nonconsentual sexual intercourse achieved through force, threats or fraud.  The majority of rape cases fit more into a date rape scenario and an accuser's testimony might be the only evidence of nonconsent and of force.  If the rape victim is a spouse, then PC 262, spousal rape, is the charge.  PC 288(a), oral copulation by force, is similar, but does not require intercourse.  For rapes involving no force, it may be possible to get a probation sentence, but rape can carry a sentence of up to eight years in prison.  Rape is a serious allegation, but these allegations are not always true.  There are many motives for a false accusation and an alleged victim cannot withdraw consent days later if they consented to intercourse at the time.  Regretful consent is still consent.  Having a criminal defense attorney assert your defenses early could avoid filing of charges altogether, and can help you avoid a serious conviction if charges are wrongly filed.

PC 261.5 - Statutory Rape

Sexual intercourse with a minor is rape in California.  A minor, under the age of 18, is legally incapable of consenting to sexual intercourse.  Many states have a cushion, whereby a 19 year old would not be guilty of statutory rape if they engaged in sex with a 17 year old, for example.  This is NOT the case in California.  In fact, even a minor who has sex with another minor is guilty of statutory rape.  Because a minor offender would also be a victim, this is rarely charged, but it is important to note that there is no age cushion under California statutory rape law. 

PC 243.4 - Sexual Battery

Sexual battery is touching the intimate parts of someones body for the purpose of arousal, gratification or abuse.  PC 243.4 is a "wobbler" and can be charged as a misdemeanor or felony.  A conviction of felony sexual battery can carry a prison term of up to four years.

PC 288 - Lewd Acts with a Child
Touching a child (under 14) for sexual purposes is a felony under PC 288.  This crime is severely punished with long prison terms and a "strike" under California's "three strikes" law.  Children can falsely accuse someone of molestation.  Sometimes, a third party will even encourage a child to lie in order to hurt another person.  This is one of the most difficult accusations to defend because of the strong societal stigma involved and anyone charged with PC 288 needs a strong defense to avoid a long prison term.  PC 288.2 makes it a crime to send text or picture messages to a child for purposes of seduction. 

PC 290 - Sex Offender Registration
PC 290, known as the Sex Offender Registration Act, makes people convicted of certain sex crimes register as a sex offender for life. 

PC 314 - Indecent Exposure

In California, Indecent Exposure is a misdemeanor, punishable by up to 6 months in jail and a fine of up to $1000.  A second or subsequent offense can be filed as a felony.

PC 647(a) - Lewd Acts in Public
PC 647(a) prohibits lewd acts in public and makes it a misdemeanor.  This charge can often be reduced to a trespass or disorderly conduct if not dismissed outright. 

PC 647(b) - Prostitution/Solicitation
Undercover stings target prostitution and solicitation for prostitution.  Merely offering or agreeing to a transaction involving sex for money is a misdemeanor.  This is an embarrassing charge to have on your record.  There is often a strong defense because prostitutes frequently use ambiguous language.  Sometimes, people act like they are soliciting prostitution, but they are not serious about actually going through with it.   MORE on Prostitution Crimes

If you have been arrested or charged with a sex crime in Southern California, contact the Law Offices of Nicholas Loncar for a free consultation with a Los Angeles Criminal Defense Attorney.

IMPORTANT LINKS:
LA Sheriff's Inmate Locator 
Los Angeles Superior Court  
Los Angeles Police Department
Los Angeles Felony Bail Schedule
Los Angeles Misdemeanor Bail Schedule

Nicholas M. Loncar, Esq.
Los Angeles Criminal Defense Attorney
t. 818-646-8788 | f: 818-646-8772
MOBILE: 323-803-4352
www.iDefendLosAngeles.com
Nicholas.Loncar@iDefendLosAngeles.com
12198 Ventura Blvd | Suite 207
Studio City, CA | 91604

By Nicholas Loncar

 


Comments

07/06/2014 8:22am

great post idefendlosangeles.com

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