Rockland County Sex Crimes Lawyer
Despite their reputation, not all sex crimes are felonies, nor does a conviction necessarily require a person to register as a sex offender. Still, a conviction for any type of sex crime can result in a significant jail sentence and carries a stigma that could permanently affect the rest of your life.
As such, it is usually vital for defendants who are facing these accusations to defend themselves at every opportunity, and a Rockland County sex crimes lawyer could provide this protection. Seasoned criminal attorneys who defend clients accused of sex crimes understand the life-changing impact that this accusation could have on you and defend your best interests with vigor and diligence.
How Do Rockland County Courts Define Sex Crimes?
In general, a sex crime can be defined as any instance in which a person takes advantage of another in a sexual way. This can range from simple unwanted touching to forced sexual penetration. Because of this, sex crimes can range in severity from simple misdemeanors all the way up to severe felonies.
Any of these convictions carry a potential jail sentence upon conviction. However, even after a person gains their freedom, their legal troubles may not be over. Most sex crime convictions require a person to register as a sex offender upon release. This means that their current address is published in a public database and they are prohibited from living in many areas and holding certain jobs. Therefore, it may be essential for someone facing charges to reach out to a Rockland County sex crimes lawyer.
Examples of Sex Crimes in New York Penal Law
Under New York Penal Law, sex crimes can range from simple to serious offenses. Some common and prominent examples include:
- Sexual misconduct (New York Penal Law §130.20) – People can commit sexual misconduct, a class A misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail, by having penetrative sex with another person without their consent, having oral sex without that person’s consent, or having sex with an animal or dead body
- Sexual abuse in the first degree (New York Penal Law §130.65) – This crime, a class D felony, involves subjecting another person to unwanted sexual contact, which is assault, by virtue of threatening them or taking advantage of a victim who is physically helpless or under the age of 11. A defendant here does not need to actually participate in the contact, as simply arranging the act is enough to warrant a criminal charge
- Rape in the second degree (New York Penal Law §130.30) – A class D felony, this particular definition of rape applies any time a person 18 years of age or more has sex with any person under the age of 15, as well as whenever a person has sex with someone who is unable to consent due to a mental disability
For more information about what is considered a sex crime, consult with an experienced Rockland lawyer.
What are the Collateral Consequences of a Sex Crime Conviction?
Every sex offense brings the potential for incarceration or monetary fines. However, this type of crime also brings serious collateral consequences that might not be present with other offenses. In addition to the possibility of registering as a sex offender, a person convicted of a sex crime could also suffer severe damage to their reputation.
This type of conviction could make it hard to find work or housing in the future. In fact, it could disqualify a person from certain occupations entirely. Felony sex offenses also have the potential to cost a person their right to vote or own a firearm. A skilled attorney in Rockland County could help someone avoid or minimize the potential consequences of their sex crime charges.
How Long Must a Person Convicted of a Sex Crime Stay on the Offender Registry?
The amount of time a person must remain registered with state sex offender registry depends on their risk level. Every person convicted of a sex crime is assigned to a level based on the risk that they re-offend. Level 1 represents the lowest risk while level 3 represents the highest risk.
Most level 1 sex offenders are required to register for 20 years. However, Level 1 offenders could be required to register for life if they are also designated a sexual predator, sexually violent offender, or predicate sex offender. Level 2 and Level 3 offenders must remain on the registry for the remainder of their lives.
Reach Out to a Rockland County Sex Crimes Attorney
Any accusation of a crime is a serious matter, but sex crimes are often especially so. Even in cases where the stated penalties are only misdemeanors, a conviction may require a defendant to register as a sex offender, a classification that could affect every part of their lives.
A Rockland County sex crimes lawyer could help you understand what charges you are facing, listen to your version of events, and formulate a defense designed to contest the prosecution’s case in court. Call today to see what may be possible in your case.