Fairfax Sex Crimes Lawyer
As a Fairfax sex crimes lawyer, I have witnessed first-hand just how much of a hot button issue sex crimes have become. Although sex crimes represent a small fraction of criminal charges which make their way to court, prosecutors in Virginia aggressively prosecute sex crimes cases. Likewise, at the time of sentencing, a judge is more likely to throw the book at the defendant. Much of the vitriol towards sex crimes is well-placed, but at the same time, it also comes from things we see on TV shows like Law & Order – which paint people accused of sex crimes (and their attorneys) as being covered with a sheen of slime.
In real life, sex crimes are very different than how they appear on television. In fact, perhaps only 10% of all rape cases involve situations where the victim did not know their assailant. Furthermore, not all people accused of sex crimes actively intended to physically violate another person. Instead, many times, consent becomes a muddy issue which can be clouded even further when alcohol or drugs are brought into the mix. Moreover, people are sometimes falsely accused for a variety of reasons, but police are very hesitant to call the victim a liar even when evidence would suggest that the victim is in fact lying. Nevertheless, charging a person with a sex crime based solely on the word of another person is always a dangerous issue.
Given all the potential ramifications of being charged with a sex crime, as well as the difficulty police have in sometimes being able to fully investigate the crime, it is imperative that you contact a Fairfax sex crimes lawyer to aggressively, skillfully, and passionately defend your innocence.
Sex Crimes in Virginia
Virginia has defined a sex crime as any sexual act which has been performed on another person without their consent. Some crimes which have been categorized as sex crimes include:
In Virginia, rape can be one of three things: (1) It can be nonconsensual sexual intercourse which was accomplished against another person’s will through force, threat, or intimidation; (2) nonconsensual sex achieved as a result of the victim’s mental or physical incapacity; or (3) sexual intercourse with a child under the age of 13 – where the law presumes that a child cannot give consent.
Rape is a very serious crime, but the allegations are not always true. People are motivated to make false accusations for a variety of reasons, and if consent was given, the victim cannot withdraw that consent a few days later merely because they are embarrassed or had regrets. Consent is consent irrespective of whether a person was later regretful of providing that consent. Retaining a Fairfax sex crimes lawyer at the outset might not only help in avoiding charges altogether, but it can also help you avoid a wrongful conviction if charges have been filed.
Carnal Knowledge of a Child
Sexual intercourse with a minor is considered statutory rape in Virginia. However, sex with a child between 13-15 years old is referred to as “Carnal knowledge of a child.” Anyone engaged in purportedly “consensual” sexual activity with a child can be found guilty of this crime.
Likewise, engaging in sex, and not merely sexual activity, with a child 15 to 18 is considered statutory rape and is punishable as a Class 1 misdemeanor which is punishable by up to one year and jail and a fine of up to $2,500.
If you are accused of either carnal knowledge of a child or statutory rape, you will want to consult with a Fairfax sex crimes lawyer as soon as possible.
Sexual Battery and Aggravated Sexual Battery
In Virginia, sexual battery is defined as sexually abusing a person without their consent through the use of force, threat, deception, or intimidation. Sexual battery is charged as a Class 1 misdemeanor. When it comes to sexual battery, you will want to speak with a Fairfax sex crimes lawyer if you have been charged or arrested even though the crime is a misdemeanor without a very severe penalty. On its face, the penalty may seem minor, but it is how a conviction can destroy your life, reputation, family, and job opportunities where the true consequences of a sexual battery conviction can rear their ugly head.
Aggravated sexual battery is nearly identical to common sexual battery with one exception – the victim is a child or mentally/physically disabled person. Additionally, aggravated sexual battery can be charged when a deadly weapon was used in conjunction with the sexual battery. Because aggravated battery is a felony which carries a sentence of up to 20 years in prison, you will want to hire a Fairfax sex crimes lawyer to help you obtain the best possible outcome if you have been charged or arrested for aggravated sexual battery.
In Virginia, indecent exposure is a Class 1 misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $2,500. Indecent exposure can be charged when a person intentionally exposes their private parts in a public place. However, breastfeeding a child does not suffice as grounds for an indecent exposure charge.
Prostitution / Solicitation
Undercover stings by law enforcement vice units tend to target the crimes of prostitution and solicitation. We have individual pages exclusively dedicated to what you should do if you have been charged with the crimes of prostitution, solicitation, or pimping. No matter what your charge, having a prostitution or solicitation charge on your record is embarrassing. However, there are often a number of defenses available to these charges.
How a Fairfax Sex Crimes Lawyer Can Help
As discussed above, the consequences of a sex crimes conviction can follow you well outside of the courtroom. Specifically, a conviction will require you to register as a sex offender. Additionally, if a person fails to register or keep their information current, they can face a whole new round of criminal charges.
Given the extremely serious nature of sex crime charges, you will want to contact a Fairfax sex crimes lawyer if you or someone you love has been charged with a sex crime. We have the passion, experience, and know-how to help you fight these charges and to obtain the best possible outcome in your case. Many times, these charges can be dismissed or reduced, but if the case must go to trial, you are going to want the best Fairfax sex crimes lawyer you can get. Contact the Law Offices of Randall Sousa today for a free consultation with an aggressive and affordable Fairfax sex crimes lawyer. 571-354-6164
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By: Randall Sousa
Fairfax Sex Crimes Lawyer Explains Virginia’s Sex Crime Laws
Violations of Virginia sex crime laws are aggressively prosecuted. If you are facing charges for prostitution, solicitation, or procuring money from the earnings of a prostitute (pimping), contact a Fairfax sex crimes lawyer today for a free consultation.
Prostitution and Solicitation (Virginia Code § 18.2-346)
Virginia Code § 18.2-346 actually codifies both prostitution as well as solicitation of prostitution. On the one hand, prostitution is engaging, or offering to engage, in sex or sexual activity in exchange for money. On the other hand, solicitation is when a person offers a person money for the purpose of inducing them to engage in sexual activity. To be guilty of these crimes, the accused must take an actual step in furtherance of attempting to engage in sexual activity in exchange for money or its equivalent (i.e. drugs).
Each of these crimes are considered Class 1 misdemeanors which carries a potential sentence of up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $2,500.
Keeping, Living in, or Visiting a Bawdy Place (Virginia Code § 18.2-347)
The definition of a bawdy place is any location which is used for the purposes of prostitution or sexual intercourse. This crime is considered a Class 1 misdemeanor which carries a penalty of up to one year in jail and a fine not to exceed $2,500. As a point of emphasis, each day a person lives, keeps, or visits a bawdy place is considered a separate crime. Accordingly, if a person visits a bawdy place 3 times over the course of a week, they could technically be charged with three separate counts of violating this section of the Virginia Code.
Aiding Prostitution or Illegal Sexual Intercourse (Virginia Code § 18.2-348)
If an individual knows or should know that they are transporting another person to a place for the purpose of engaging in prostitution, then that person may be charged with aiding prostitution. Likewise, if a person provides information to another person concerning how or where to procure prostitution, and they provide such information with the intention of assisting that person in procuring prostitution, then such conduct would also be considered a violation of Virginia sex crime laws.
Aiding prostitution is a Class 1 misdemeanor. Thus, a conviction carries a sentence of up to one year in jail and a fine not to exceed $2,500.
Using a Vehicle to Promote Prostitution (Virginia Code § 18.2-349)
Virginia sex crime laws encompass a wide range of activity, including activity where a person uses, or allows the use of a vehicle to be used for the purposes of allowing prostitution to occur. Thus, a person who has picked up a prostitute in their vehicle with the intention of engaging in sexual intercourse inside their vehicle can be charged with both solicitation of a prostitute, as well as using a vehicle to promote prostitution.
Virginia’s sex crime laws categorize this crime as a Class 1 misdemeanor. Thus, a conviction carries a penalty of up to one year in prison and a fine of up to $2,500.
Taking, Detaining, or Confining a Person for Prostitution (Virginia Code § 18.2-355)
Whenever a person is taken against their will, the potential criminal charge will become infinitely more serious. You can find more information about abduction and kidnapping on our page dealing with Virginia Kidnapping and Abduction Laws.
The crime of taking, detaining, of confining a person for prostitution can be charged against the person who has taken, detained, or confined another person, as well as against a parent or guardian who allowed the victim to be taken. Pursuant to Virginia’s sex crime laws, a person can be charged under Virginia Code § 18.2-355 if they engage in any of the following conduct:
- Takes another person or causes them to enter a “bawdy place” or any other place against that person’s will for the purpose of forcing them to engage in prostitution;
- Takes or detains another against their will for the purpose of forcing them into marriage or for the purposes of raping the victim; or
- If a parent or guardian of the victim allows the victim to be taken or detained for the purpose of prostitution.
Taking, detaining, or confining a person for the purpose of prostitution is a Class 4 felony which carries a penalty of two to 10 years in a state prison and a fine of up to $100,000.
Receiving Money for Procuring a Person for Prostitution (Virginia Code §18.2-356)
Virginia sex crime laws have labeled the crime of pandering as “Receiving money for procuring persons.” Pandering involves the practice of recruiting a person to be used for prostitution. In order to be found guilty, the Commonwealth must prove that the person (1) received money or its equivalent; (2) for having recruited a person to engage in prostitution.
Pandering is considered a Class 4 felony and a conviction carries a sentence of two to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000.
Receiving Money from the Earnings of a Prostitute (Virginia Code § 18.2-357)
As the name of the crime not-so-subtly suggests, pimping consists of receiving money on behalf of, or from, a prostitute’s earnings. The prosecutor must prove that the individual was aware of the source of the money. Pimping is considered a Class 4 felony which carries a sentence of two to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000.
What to Do If You Have Been Charged with a Violation of Virginia Sex Crime Laws
If you or someone you know has been arrested or charged with a violation of any Virginia prostitution laws, contact the Law Offices of Randall Sousa today for a free consultation with an aggressive and affordable Fairfax sex crimes lawyer. 571-354-6164
PASSIONATE AND PERSONAL SERVICE
The Law Offices of Randall Sousa provides clients throughout Virginia with affordable, professional, and aggressive criminal defense legal services. If you have been arrested, charged with a crime, or are under investigation, call us now for a Free Consultation.
Fairfax Criminal Defense Attorney Randall Sousa possesses a deep commitment and passion for criminal defense, and he is relentless when it comes to fighting for his clients in each and every case.
Law Offices of Randall Sousa
3007 Williams Drive
Fairfax, VA 22031