In Texas, sex crimes constitute some of the most serious criminal offenses prosecuted by the justice system. A sexual crime is any action that involves unwanted contact of a sexual nature or an attempt to engage in sexual activity with a minor. The possession, distribution or creation of illegal pornographic materials also constitutes a sex crime. In addition, solicitation of prostitution is a punishable offense under sexual crime laws.
Consequences for Sex Crimes
Many people who are convicted of sex crimes will find themselves facing severe legal consequences when they are sentenced in a court of law. Nearly all sexual crime convictions involve incarceration and heavy fines. Also, the alleged guilty party can be entered into a database so that their information is kept on file. Some of the typical sex crimes penalties include:
- Incarceration: Most sex crimes are charged as felonies. For example, a charge of rape is considered a second-degree felony that can carry a prison term of two to 20 years. Aggravated sexual assault is a first-degree felony that can be punished by five to 99 years in prison.
- Sex offender registration: When a person is convicted of a sex crime, they will be required to register as a sex offender. Their name and personal information will be entered into a computer database. In most cases, this information will remain in the sex offender registry for the duration of the person’s life. Often, when a person convicted of a sex crime moves to a new place or gets a new job, they will be required to notify law enforcement so that their information can be updated in the database. Also, they may be required to notify their new neighbors and employers of their sex offender status.
- Community supervision and probation: After someone has served a prison term for a sex crime conviction, they may be placed into a probation program in their county of residence. The length of this probation may vary, but it can last for years. This program requires the individual to make monthly reports to their probation officer, pay monthly fines and submit to random drug screens. The individual may also be required to attend counseling as part of their probation.
Contact a Sex Crimes Lawyer in Houston, TX
Defending against sex crime charges can be difficult. An experienced sex crimes attorney will attempt to prove that the defendant was falsely accused of the crime and will try to show that there is insufficient evidence to support a conviction. Only a qualified criminal attorney has the in-depth knowledge of the law that is required to secure a proper legal defense.
For more information about sex crimes penalties and possible legal defenses, contact Gary S. Miller and his associates at 713-866-6233 to schedule a free consultation.