Plano Sex Crimes Defense Attorney
Being accused of a sex crime can wreak havoc on your life, even if you are never convicted. A sex offense conviction can then lead to a lifetime of consequences, many of which can be costly. These can include immediate penalties, including imprisonment, and also long-term effects due to sex offender registry, professional limitations, reputational damage, and more.
If you were arrested and charged with any type of sex crime, you need a Plano criminal defense lawyer on your side as soon as possible. Attorney J. Michael Price II is a leading defense professional who works tirelessly to protect the rights of those accused of criminal offenses, including sex crimes. We have a record of excellence when it comes to representing defendants in Plano and throughout Collin County. Reach out today to learn how we can aggressively protect your rights and future during the criminal process.
Sex Offenses Under Texas Law
Each state sets out its own criminal offenses and penalties, and the following are some sex crime charges you might face in Texas:
- Prohibited sexual conduct
- Sexual assault (rape)
- Aggravated sexual assault
- Sex trafficking
- Criminal solicitation of a minor
- Indecency with a child
- Sexual performance by a child
- Aggravated sexual assault of a child
- Public lewdness
- Indecent exposure
- Compelling prostitution
- Promotion of prostitution
- Aggravated promotion of prostitution
- Obscene display or distribution
- Lewd and lascivious conduct
- Possession or promotion of child pornography
- Sale, distribution, or display of harmful material to a minor
- Improper relationship between educator and student
- Improper photography or visual recording
Each of these offenses has its own elements that the prosecutor must prove for a conviction, as well as its own potential penalties for a conviction. They all have one thing in common, however, which is that they are extremely serious matters that require the assistance of an experienced criminal defense lawyer for the best possible outcome.
Penalties for Sex Crimes in TX
As with every type of criminal offense, a conviction for a sex offense will come with many penalties. First, whether someone pleads guilty to charges or is found guilty at trial, the judge overseeing the case will determine the defendant’s sentence. Most sex crimes are felony offenses in Texas, and the potential imprisonment for felony convictions include:
- State jail felony = 180 days to two years in county jail
- Third-degree felony = Two to ten years in state prison
- Second-degree felony = Two to 20 years in state prison
- First-degree felony = Five to 99 years in state prison
Felonies can also come with a fine of up to $10,000. Even if someone avoids imprisonment, they will likely face a lengthy period of probation with strict conditions and supervision.
In addition to the above court-ordered penalties, there are many long-term consequences of a sex crime conviction that can persist long after you complete a sentence, such as:
- Having to register as a sex offender, which makes information about you and your offense publicly available via simple internet searches.
- Having difficulty finding a job if prospective employers conduct criminal background checks.
- Being disqualified from professions that involve children or other caretaking responsibilities.
- Losing or being denied a professional license
- Losing academic scholarships, athletic opportunities at colleges or universities, or not being accepted into academic programs.
To avoid all of these life-changing consequences, it is imperative that you have a criminal defense lawyer working to avoid a conviction at all costs.
What If Someone Falsely Accused Me of a Sex Crime?
Even if the charges against you are dropped, or you don’t get convicted of the sex crime, just the false accusation of being a sex offender may be enough to negatively affect your professional and personal reputation and relationships. The minute that you learn of the false accusation against you, you must act quickly.
Get in touch with The Law Office of J. Michael Price II right away. Our skilled Plano, TX, sex crimes defense lawyer will immediately investigate the claim against you, build a solid defense, and handle the prosecution. You don’t even need to wait until you’re falsely charged or accused of a crime to call us. Consult with a lawyer right away if you believe that someone is considering accusing you. Your lawyer can quickly intervene before you even get charged with anything.
The Benefits of an Aggressive TX Criminal Defense Attorney
Defending against sex crime charges is a difficult feat. These are often he said-she said situations in which it is the alleged victim’s story against the defendant’s story. Testimony from victims can be highly persuasive to juries, even without other substantial evidence that someone committed the offense. It can become even more complicated when an alleged victim or witness is a child.
People of all ages can also face sex offense allegations, especially with the rise of “sexting,” “revenge porn,” and other sex-related communications that often involve teenagers. The law firm of J. Michael Price II has represented teens in North Texas accused of this type of unlawful sexual conduct. Whether it is an adult or a teen facing charges, our goal is always to limit the effects of the criminal case on their futures as much as possible.
Other defenses to sex crimes might include demonstrating:
- False and vengeful accusations from ex-partners
- Inaccurate witness identification
- That the conduct was consensual
First, after an arrest, know that the police do not necessarily have adequate evidence to charge you with a sex crime. Instead, they might try to interrogate you to gain evidence or statements to use against you. Know that your defense can begin right then, and you should invoke your right to remain silent and contact a criminal defense lawyer. Having defense representation from the start might even result in your release without charges being issued.
If you already face charges, we can assist with the following and more, as these steps might apply to your case:
- Investigate the circumstances of your arrest and the alleged offense
- Discuss and review possible evidence against you with law enforcement and the prosecutors
- Identify weaknesses in the prosecutor’s case and point them out
- Determine whether the evidence against you was lawfully obtained
- Negotiate a favorable plea agreement with the prosecutor in the event you decide to plead guilty
- Represent you at a jury trial if you decide to fight your charges in court
Can a Sex Crime Be Expunged?
In Texas, expungement or expunction is only allowable in certain circumstances, which includes the following:
The charges against you have been dismissed (but there are still certain exceptions in these circumstances).
You got arrested for a sex crime but were never charged for the crime.
You were convicted but were found innocent when your case was reopened.
You were charged but got acquitted during a trial.
You were convicted but were later pardoned by the president or governor.
There’s a conviction, charge, or arrest for a sex crime on your record because of identity theft, and the real offender was convicted, charged, or arrested for the sex crime.
As you can see, eligibility for expunction is very narrow. The rules and requirements for expunction and sealing records for any sex crime are very nuanced. It is very important to hire the right lawyer from the beginning to help resolve your case so you can remove any arrest and charge from your record at the earliest opportunity.
You should discuss your specific case with a Plano, TX, sex crimes defense lawyer to learn about your eligibility for removing a Collin County Sex Crime charge from your record. Your lawyer can thoroughly evaluate your circumstances and give you an objective opinion on which option may best suit your case.
Should I Talk to The Police?
Remember that you have the right to remain silent, so exercise this right and tell the police politely that you want to contact your lawyer. There are various reasons why talking to the police isn’t a good idea, even if you feel that outright denying the crime you’re accused of is the best thing to do to clear your name ASAP. But when the investigating officer contacts you, you’ll probably be extremely emotional and confused, and every single thing you say, even if inaccurate or by mistake, can and will be definitely used against you.
Likewise, before you know exactly what you’re being charged with and have had a chance to consult with your Sex crimes defense lawyer, you may not understand all your rights. In addition, if you’re being questioned by the police, it usually means that they may already have evidence and are actively building a case against you, so it’s best to talk to the police only when your lawyer is present.
Seek Help from a Plano TX Sex Crimes Defense Lawyer Right Away
The law office of J. Michael Price II brings more than 22 years of experience defending thousands of criminal defendants in North Texas. We are a top-rated firm with board certification and many recognitions throughout the state and the U.S. If you are seeking criminal defense representation you can trust, look no further than Mike Price.
Contact us today to discuss your situation and begin designing a strategy to defend against your sex crime charges. We are here to assist you throughout every step of the criminal process.