What You Need to Know About Sex Crimes
Sexual assault, also referred to as rape, is a serious offense that can lead to a lengthy prison sentence if you are convicted. Here in Texas, if a sexual assault crime has been carried out, the person being convicted will in most cases have to do prison time, pay a fine, and also have to register as a sex offender.
Being a registered sex offender can have an impact on the person’s career as employers will be a lot less likely to employ them, and relationships with friends and family can also be affected. Sexual assault crimes are taken very seriously in San Antonio by law enforcement and by attorneys.
San Antonio Criminal Defense Lawyer
Many lawyers will be reluctant to take on sex offense cases, as they can be quite tough to deal with. If you have been arrested or charged with sexual assault, contact a lawyer who is experienced in handling sexual assault cases. A good sex crime attorney will have plenty of experience, as well as the capability of supporting you through the difficult case.
Sexual Assault Charges
Under Texas law, sexual assault involves the alleged offender forcing another person to be part of a sexual act, without the consent of that person. The sexual act could be contact or penetration of a sexual organ, the mouth, or anus. The offender would be charged accordingly depending on how the assault was carried out. The term sexual assault can be broken down into several different sex-related crimes.
Aggravated Sexual Assault:
Aggravated sexual assault is when the accused has used violence towards the victim, or the victim’s life has been put in danger. Aggravated sexual assault is a first-degree felony.
A person can be accused of aggravated sexual assault if they have committed one of the below:
- The victim is 14 years old or younger.
- The accused is related to, a guardian or a foster parent of the victim who is under 16 years old.
- If the defendant is armed with a weapon, or has fashioned an object into a weapon, then used it or threatened to use it on the victim.
- If the accused has also committed the act of kidnapping, arson, homicide, robbery or burglary.
- If the accused has used physical force, resulting in serious injuries being sustained by the victim.
- If the individual has carried out the sexual assault on a vulnerable person who has a defect or a mental disorder.
- It can also be classed as aggravated sexual assault if the accused has administered a substance to the other person.
Indecency with a Child by Contact or Exposure:
Indecency with a child by contact or exposure can involve the breasts, sexual organs, or the anus of a child under the age of 17. Indecency with a child by contact is a second-degree felony. Indecency with a child by exposure is a third-degree felony and can involve the offender exposing their genitals or anus or exposing the child’s genitals or anus for sexual gratification reasons.
Internet Sex Crimes:
Types of Internet sex crimes:
- Possession of child pornography
- Distribution of child pornography
- Luring a child to meet in person
- Soliciting sexual acts to a minor
If the accused has been involved in an Internet sex crime with a minor, the other person would be 14 years old or younger. If the defendant knows the person is 14 or younger, then it would be a second-degree felony. If the accused believes the other person is a 14-year-old or younger but they aren’t, then it would be a third-degree felony.
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Registering as a Sex Offender
The sex offender’s register contains the details of individuals who have been convicted of sexual assault. In Texas, if you have been convicted of sexual assault then you are required the sign the sex offender’s register.
The offender will be registered as a sex offender for a specific amount of time, which is dependent on the severity of the conviction. The offender will be placed on the sex offenders register:
- Indefinitely if they have been sentenced to jail for more than 30 months, imprisonment and admission to a hospital with a restriction order, or incarceration for life.
- For ten years if they have been sentenced to imprisonment for less than 30 months but more than six months.
- For seven years if their incarceration sentence is less that six months.
- For two years if they have been cautioned for a sexual offense. If the offender is under 18 years old, they will be placed on the register for one year.
It is important that you are fully aware of the seriousness of these charges and how they can impact your life. If you require further information, then speak to a qualified criminal defense attorney.