The mere allegation of a criminal sex offense can cause significant harm to an individual’s personal and professional reputation. In addition, a person who incurs a sex crime conviction may need to serve jail time, pay high monetary fines, and register with the state sex offender registry.
Given the potential penalties upon conviction, you must have skilled legal representation in your corner if you are currently facing a sex crime charge.
The experienced Akron Sex Crime Attorneys at Patituce & Associates, LLC can handle every aspect of your criminal case and explore potential legal defenses to your pending charge. We can also negotiate with the prosecuting attorney in your case for a favorable plea deal. Our legal team will stand by you every step of the way, advocating for your legal and constitutional rights and pursuing the best possible result in your criminal case.
For a legal consultation with an Akron sex crime lawyer, please contact our firm directly. We’re available to protect your rights.
Why Choose Us to Represent You in Your Case?
Sex crimes are some of the most severe and complex criminal charges an individual may face. If you are currently pending a sex crime charge, you want the best possible legal team to advocate for your legal rights and interests.
The experienced Akron sex crime attorneys at Patituce & Associates, LLC can defend you against your charge and pursue a complete dismissal or a favorable plea deal from the prosecuting attorney.
Our legal team has a combined 70+ years of experience successfully representing individuals accused of committing crimes. Moreover, three of our lawyers are former prosecutors.
We understand the evidence that prosecutors routinely use to prove their cases, and we can use that knowledge to your advantage when defending you against your pending criminal charge. Moreover, unlike many other criminal defense law firms, we are unafraid to take a criminal case to a bench or jury trial.
Our office is at 520 South Main Street, Suite 2511, Akron, OH 44331. Let us pursue the best possible result in your criminal case.
What Are the Potential Penalties for a Sex Crime Conviction?
For a judge to impose penalties against you in a sex crime case, the state prosecutor must satisfy their legal burden of proof beyond a reasonable doubt. Prosecutors must overcome this challenging burden, and a robust legal defense may prevent the prosecutor from establishing this burden.
If the prosecution can prove their case, a sentencing judge will decide the penalties to impose against you. Every sex crime case is different, and the penalties an offender receives will depend on the specific criminal charge, their prior record, and other case-specific factors.
Sex crimes in Ohio and their corresponding penalties upon conviction include:
- Rape is usually a first-degree felony, and a conviction can lead to a maximum of 16.5 years of jail time and a fine of $20,000.
- Sexual battery is a third-degree felony, and a conviction may lead to a maximum of 36 months in jail and a $10,000 monetary fine.
- Public indecency is a fourth-degree misdemeanor, and a conviction can lead to a maximum of 30 days of incarceration, along with a $250 monetary fine.
- Unlawful sexual contact with a minor is a fourth-degree felony, and a conviction may result in a maximum of 18 months of jail time and a $5,000 fine.
- Compelling prostitution is a third-degree felony, and a convicted offender may receive a maximum jail sentence of three years and a maximum monetary fine of $10,000.
- Public indecency is a fourth-degree misdemeanor, and a conviction may result in a maximum of 30 days of incarceration and a $250 fine.
- Voyeurism is a third-degree misdemeanor, and a conviction may result in a maximum of 50 days in jail, along with a monetary fine of $500.
In addition to incurring potential legal penalties, convicted sex offenders may experience several collateral consequences that can affect the rest of their lives:
- Mandatory registration on the state sex offender registry
- The inability to find a place to live
- Difficulty gaining admission to an educational institution, such as a college or university
- Loss of scholarship funds or financial aid from a college or university
- Difficulty finding or keeping a job
- Harm to reputation in one’s personal or professional community
If you ultimately incur a criminal conviction on one of these sex crime charges in Ohio, we can represent you at your sentencing hearing in front of a judge and advocate for the most minor possible penalty in your case. We can also work to lessen the collateral consequences you experience upon conviction.
Sex Crimes in Akron
Ohio law defines several sex crimes:
- Rape, when the accused individual compels another individual to take part in sexual conduct by using or threatening the other person with some type of force, by impairing the other person in some way, or by engaging in sex with an individual who is underage or whom the accused individual knows has a physical or mental condition that precludes their ability to willingly consent to the act.
- Sexual battery, where the accused individual uses coercion to engage in sexual conduct with another individual or where the accused person has some form of special relationship – such as a student/teacher relationship – with the alleged victim
- Public indecency, where the accused individual allegedly exposes their private parts, masturbates in a public area, or engages in some type of sexual conduct with another person in public.
- Unlawful sexual contact with a minor, where an individual who is an adult engages in some type of sexual conduct with a child between 13 and 16 years old
- Compelling prostitution, where the accused individual convinces another person to take part in an act of prostitution
- Voyeurism, where an individual unlawfully eavesdrops, photographs, films, or records for purposes of sexual gratification or arousal
If you are currently pending one or more of these sex crime charges in Akron, you must immediately secure the defense representation you need.
The Akron sex crime attorneys at Patituce & Associates, LLC can formulate a strong defense to your pending criminal charge or pursue other legal options that may be available to you in your criminal case.
Possible Defenses to a Sex Crime Charge in Akron
Sometimes, you can advance a solid legal defense to your pending sex crime charge in court. If the defense is successful, it can poke holes in the prosecutor’s case, so to speak, and result in a complete dismissal of your pending charge.
Some of the most common defenses that individuals may raise in response to a sex crime charge include:
- That the alleged victim consented to the sexual act in question
- That the alleged victim mistakenly identified you as the perpetrator
- That you were not the individual who participated in the sex act or that you were somewhere else at the time the alleged incident occurred (in other words, alibi)
- The alleged victim was of age at the time the incident happened
Our legal team can determine if you may raise one or more defenses at your criminal court proceeding. If so, we can advance the appropriate defense on your behalf and work to obtain a favorable result in your pending criminal case.
Our Akron, Ohio, Law Office is Prepared to Serve You
Possible Options for a Sex Crime Case
Given the potential penalties resulting from a guilty finding or conviction in a sex crime case, having several legal options is a good idea.
On the one hand, you can assert one or more strong legal defenses at your criminal bench or jury trial. However, if you do not have a solid legal defense to your charge, you can explore other options, depending on your circumstances.
Another option in a criminal case is to pursue a favorable plea deal from the state prosecutor handling the matter. Our legal team has good working relationships with criminal court judges and state prosecutors, and we can use that experience to your advantage when negotiating a favorable plea deal on your behalf.
As part of a plea deal, the state prosecutor typically offers one or more concessions in exchange for a guilty plea from the accused individual.
For example, in some instances, the prosecuting attorney might reduce the sex crime charge from a felony charge down to a misdemeanor charge. The misdemeanor charge will carry lighter penalties than the felony charge.
Alternatively, the prosecutor might offer the accused person a period of probation. This result is more likely in cases involving a first-time offender. If the accused subsequently satisfies all conditions of their probation, then any conviction on their record may disappear.
Our team can advise whether you should take your case to a criminal court trial and advance a robust legal defense or accept a pending plea deal from the state prosecutor.
If you accept a plea deal, you must be aware that you are waiving certain legal rights. For example, by pleading guilty to a criminal offense, you automatically give up your constitutional right to a trial by jury and your right to appeal the case result.
In addition, you must put your plea deal on the record in open court and tell the judge that you are pleading guilty without any coercion from anyone else. In other words, you must agree to the plea deal freely, voluntarily, and willingly. The judge can then accept your plea deal on the record.
Steps to Take Following an Arrest for a Sex Crime
If a police officer arrests you for a sex crime, immediately assert your right to the presence of counsel during any questioning.
If you state that you want legal counsel present, yet the police officer continues questioning you, the court may suppress anything you say afterward.
In addition, you need to retain copies of all necessary paperwork in your case, including any paperwork you receive from the police officer and your charging documents. You should also retain any contact information for potential witnesses in your case. Once we enter an appearance as your attorneys, forward us all of this documentation so that we can review it and begin preparing your defense.
Next, you need to contact an Akron sex crime attorney as quickly as possible after your arrest. The sooner you get legal counsel involved in your case, the better your chances of achieving a favorable result in your criminal matter.
If you wait too long to seek legal counsel to represent you, an attorney may not have sufficient time to prepare a defense in your case and prepare it for trial. In addition, never appear at any court proceeding without legal counsel by your side.
If you show up to court alone, the judge is not under any obligation to delay your case. Instead, the judge can make you go forward with your hearing without an attorney. This is a surefire way to bring about disastrous consequences for you and your case.
Our team can enter an appearance on your behalf right away and begin protecting your legal and constitutional rights while your criminal case is pending in the system.
Call a Knowledgeable Akron Sex Crime Lawyer Today
Sex crime convictions of any type can dramatically affect your future. Do everything possible to avoid harsh penalties or wrongful conviction. This involves seeking the right criminal defense representation.
The skilled team of attorneys at Patituce & Associates, LLC is ready to defend you against your criminal charge immediately. For a free case evaluation and legal consultation with an Akron sex crime attorney, please call us at (440) 641-4434 or contact us online to learn more.
Patituce & Associates, LCC – Akron Office
520 S Main Street, Suite 2511
Akron, OH 44331