Facing an arrest and accusation of a sex crime can be a distressing and degrading experience. A conviction for a sex crime offense in Virginia, as well as in many other jurisdictions, can lead to imprisonment, fines, and severe repercussions for your ability to work, care for your family, and interact with others. Despite the foundational principle of the American legal system that presumes innocence until proven otherwise, individuals accused of sex crimes often find themselves treated as guilty from the moment they come into contact with the police.
There exist various plausible defenses against allegations of sexual abuse and sex crimes, and it is crucial to recognize that not everyone accused of these offenses is truly guilty. To better understand the options available, please review the following information or contact a Virginia sex crimes attorney.
In broad terms, Virginia legislation characterizes a sex crime as any sexual act carried out without the explicit consent of the other person. While many sex crimes typically entail direct physical contact, it’s essential to note that such contact is not always a prerequisite for facing charges or being convicted of specific sex offenses. For instance, indecent exposure near a school or daycare can, under certain conditions, be categorized as a sex crime, even if no actual sexual act took place.
In Virginia, sex crimes are typically categorized into two main groups: sexual offenses and violent sexual offenses. The latter, encompassing grave acts like rape, abduction for immoral purposes, and aggravated sexual battery, are considered more severe and carry stringent prison sentences. Conviction for these offenses mandates inclusion in the Virginia Sex Offender Registry. Sexual offenses, on the other hand, may not necessarily involve physical violence, encompassing activities like unlawful photography, indecent liberties with a child, or child pornography. Despite the absence of overt violence, individuals convicted of such offenses are still obligated to register on the sex offender registry. Given the severity of prosecution and the diverse range of charges within the realm of sex crimes in Virginia, understanding the potential consequences is crucial.
In Northern Virginia, sex crimes are legally defined with corresponding penalties. Virginia classifies sex crimes under Title 18.2 (Crimes and Offenses Generally), Chapter 4 (Crimes Against the Person), typically within Section 18.2-61 through Section 18.2-67.10. Specific mandatory consequences, including registration in the Sex Offender Registry, are imposed upon conviction for certain offenses, such as rape, forcible sodomy, and object penetration.
Rape: involves engaging in sexual vaginal intercourse with the victim through force. Conviction results in a felony charge and a potential sentence of up to life imprisonment.
Forcible Sodomy: Comparable to rape, this offense entails forceful sexual vaginal intercourse. A felony conviction carries a penalty ranging from five years to life imprisonment.
Object Animate or Inanimate Sexual Penetration: Similar to rape and forcible sodomy, this crime involves using animate or inanimate objects for sexual penetration. A felony conviction may lead to a sentence of five years to life imprisonment.
Carnal Knowledge of a Child Between Ages 13 and 15: This encompasses various sexual activities with minors aged 13 to 15, regardless of force or consent. Penalties range from a Class 4 felony to a Class 6 felony, resulting in imprisonment for one to 10 years and fines up to $100,000.
Carnal Knowledge of Certain Minors: Involves sexual acts, such as intercourse and fellatio, committed by individuals working in facilities serving juveniles aged 15 or older. A conviction results in a Class 6 felony, with potential imprisonment of up to five years, or at the court’s discretion, up to one year in jail and/or a fine of up to $2,500. This also applies to individuals working in correctional facilities engaging in sexual relations with inmates.
Aggravated Sexual Battery: Involves the sexual abuse of an individual, such as a parent, grandparent, or stepparent, using force, threats, or intimidation, resulting in serious bodily or mental harm. The offender may also use or threaten to use a deadly weapon. Penalties for this offense include a felony conviction, up to 20 years in prison, and fines of up to $100,000.
Sexual battery pertains to the sexual abuse of another person through deception, force, intimidation, or the threat of force. This charge may apply if the perpetrator has authority over the victim, such as in cases involving parolees or probationers. Penalties for sexual battery include up to one year in jail and fines of up to $2,500.
Infected Sexual Battery: This occurs when an individual who knows they have AIDS, HIV, hepatitis B, or syphilis engages in sexual acts and intentionally transmits the infectious disease to another person. Penalties include a Class 6 felony conviction, up to five years in prison, or, at the court’s discretion, up to one year in jail and fines up to $2,500. This charge encompasses acts performed without informing the other party of the infectious condition.
Sexual Abuse of a Child Under 15 Years of Age: Involves a person with overt sexual intent sexually abusing a child between the ages of 13 and 15. Penalties for this offense include a Class 1 misdemeanor, up to five years in prison, or, at the court’s discretion, up to one year in jail and fines up to $2,500.
Crimes Against Nature: It applies to individuals who engage in carnal knowledge or perform sexual acts with animals. Penalties for this offense include a Class 6 felony, up to five years in prison, or, at the court’s discretion, up to one year in jail and fines up to $2,500. This charge also extends to those engaging in various sexual acts with relatives, such as a son, grandson, daughter, or granddaughter. In such cases, the penalties could result in a Class 5 felony conviction, up to 10 years in prison, and fines up to $2,500. Penalties are significantly higher if the activity involves a child between 13 and 18.
Prohibitions on Adultery and Fornication for Individuals Ineligible for Marriage: Carries severe legal consequences. Offenders may face a Class 1 misdemeanor charge, entailing a potential one-year jail term and/or a fine of $2,500. Stricter penalties are imposed if the act involves one’s child or grandchild, with heightened consequences if the victim is between 13 and 18.
Engaging in Indecent Liberties with a Child: Encompasses actions such as exposing genitals or sexual parts, proposing such acts to a child, fondling, suggesting fondling to a child, proposing sexual intercourse, or enticing a child into a location for these purposes. Convictions result in felony charges, up to 10 years of imprisonment, and possible fines. Penalties escalate when the perpetrator is the minor’s grandparent, parent, or step-parent.
Individuals in a Supervisory Position committing Indecent Liberties with a Child: Defined as those over 18 with custodial care who sexually abuse or propose sex acts to a child, face felony convictions, up to five years in prison, or, at the court’s discretion, up to one year in jail and/or a fine up to $2,500. Repeat violations incur heightened penalties.
Attempts at Sexual Crimes: Encompassing offenses like attempted rape, forcible sodomy, object penetration, attempted aggravated sexual battery, and attempted sexual battery, result in felony convictions, substantial prison sentences, and fines up to $100,000.
A Third Conviction of a Sexual Offense Misdemeanor: Pertains to individuals with two prior sexual offense misdemeanor convictions, facing a Class 6 felony conviction with up to five years in prison or, at the court’s discretion, up to one year in jail and/or a fine up to $2,500.
Repeat Sexual Assault and Violent Sexual Assault: After release from custody results in penalties, with the former receiving the maximum term for the latest conviction and the latter facing life imprisonment.
Sex Offenses Prohibiting Proximity to Children: Targets those convicted of a sexual offense with a child found loitering within 100 feet of a school, daycare, or playground or residing within 500 feet of a school, daycare, or park sharing a boundary with a school. This incurs a Class 6 felony conviction, up to five years in prison, or, at the court’s discretion, up to one year in jail and/or a fine of up to $2,500. Offenders are additionally barred from working or volunteering at schools or daycare facilities.
The classification of sexting as a sex crime depends on the content involved, including the text and any images shared. When individuals under the age of 18 are engaged in sexting, it can potentially lead to charges related to the creation, transmission, or distribution of child pornography, along with various other legal concerns.
A sex crime conviction can lead to a range of penalties, spanning from significant prison sentences for severe felonies within the Department of Corrections to less severe misdemeanor charges that may involve no incarceration and minimal fines.
Potential consequences include incarceration in the Department of Corrections, local jail time, registration on a sex offense registry such as the Sexually Violent Predator Registry, probation, and specific requirements like attending classes or undergoing mental health evaluations. If you require the services of a NoVa sex crimes defense lawyer, please contact our office to schedule a consultation with our attorney.
The assistance of a Virginia Sex Crimes Lawyer in navigating legal proceedings is crucial. Securing legal representation early in the process is vital for comprehending and contesting a sex offense charge effectively. Frequently, evidence related to sex crimes is available for collection and discovery. However, once individuals are approached by law enforcement or the prosecutor’s office, their willingness to communicate and present their side of the story may diminish.
To safeguard potential evidence, engaging an attorney at an early stage is imperative. Conversing with law enforcement early in the process may be outside one’s best interest. With a lawyer by your side, you receive guidance on what information should and should not be shared with law enforcement.
misconduct, illegal sexual behavior, sexual assault, or illegal pornography or child pornography.
Being charged with a sex offense in Virginia is undoubtedly stressful. Accompanying harsh penalties are severe consequences such as loss of vital civil rights and lifetime registration as Virginia sex offenders.
Although the highest percentage of sex offenses involve physical contact with the victim, it’s not always the case. Other wrongdoings in which the culprit acts without the consent of the victim are also sex crimes, for instance, indecent exposure.
Understanding all Virginia’s sex crimes laws is a daunting task for anyone without prior experience in the state laws. Besides, trying to build a defense against a sex crimes charge on your own may prove ineffective. Therefore, it’s critical that anyone accused of a sex offense consult an experienced sex crimes attorney with an in-depth understanding of the law and can guide them through the case.
For help with being charged with a sex offense conviction in Virginia, turn to attorney Jad Sarsour. Jad has substantial knowledge and decades of experience that enable him to passionately and successfully fight for the rights of individuals accused of sex offenses in the state of Virginia. Contact us today for a free consultation.
In Virginia’s court system, sex crimes are covered in VA code section 18.2-61 through section 18.2-67.10. These crimes are classified into two broad categories: aggravated sexual battery and sexual offenses under Virginia Laws.
Sexually violent offenses are generally severe and come with harsher penalties. They include but are not limited to forcible sodomy, rape, rape of a minor, abduction with immoral purpose, aggravated sex battery, taking indecent liberties with a minor, object sexual penetration, and indecent exposure.
A Virginia Sex crime charges such as unlawfully photographing another person is less severe than sexually assaulted crimes but still carries substantial punishments, including compulsory life-long registration in Virginia sexual offender registry.
Typically, sex crimes such as rape, indecent liberties, and object sexual penetration, aggravated sexual battery, indecent exposure, and child pornography are regarded as felonies in Virginia law. Being accused of a sex crime case in Virginia should not be taken lightly, and you should firstly hire a sex crime attorney who will fight for you completely.
VA code section 18.2-67.4 defines sex battery as the sexual abuse against the will of the complainant through intimidation, force, ruse, or threat. It’s a class 1 misdemeanor punishable with up to 1-year jail term and/or $2500 fine.
Note that conviction of sex crime in Virginia for the third time incurs a separate felony charge that requires to register as a sex offender. Sexual battery against a minor also requires the convicted person to register as a sex offender.
Virginia Code section 18.2-67.4: 1 outlines the penalties for infected sex crimes.
According to VA section 18.2-67.4: 1(A), a person who engages in sexual intercourse, anal intercourse, fellatio, anilingus, or cunnilingus with another person with the intent of infecting them with syphilis, hepatitis, or HIV/AIDS, is guilty of a felony. The corresponding punishment is 1 to 5 years imprisonment, or at the discretion of the court or jury, a reduced penalty of up to one year imprisonment and/or a $2500 fine.
If the perpetrator does not intend to infect the victim with the diseases mentioned above, then VA code section 18.2-67.4: 1B) classifies this crime as a class 1 misdemeanor. In this case, the accused faces up to 12 months in jail and/or $2500 maximum fine.
For help and more information on sexual battery and infected sexual battery laws or any other sex crime charges, it’s wise to contact an experienced sex crimes attorney like Jad Sarsour for a free consultation and the best possible outcome.
Any intercourse with a child under thirteen years of age is rape and carries compulsory life imprisonment if the offender is at least 18 years old under Virginia law.
VA code section 18.2-63 covers another form of a sexual crime against children knowledge of a minor between 13 and 15 years. It becomes a class 4 felony when an adult carnally knows a child between 13 years and 15 years old without force.
Sex crimes against a minor are regarded as a class 6 felony when a person:
Nonetheless, if the consenting minor is less than three years the accused’s junior, the accused is guilty of a class 4 misdemeanor.
Sexual battery against a minor younger than 13 years is a felony punishable with a 1–20-year jail term and a $100,000 maximum fine. An adult can be charged with a class 5 felony if they take indecent liberties with a minor.
The above is just a snippet of the Virginia law that covers sexual crimes against children. So, it may be difficult to understand, let alone know, how to proceed with any charge associated with a sexual offense against a child in Virginia. Competent lawyers for sex offenders, therefore, become handy in such situations.
Minors accused of sexual offenses against other children face a different set of penalties under Virginia law. If a minor commits a non-consensual against a minor three years younger, the accused is guilty of a felony and punished with a jail term lying somewhere between one and five years. This is a very serious crime in Virginia.
When a consenting minor is less than three years younger than the accused juvenile, it’s classified as a class 4 misdemeanor. You will need an attorney in Virginia who is experienced in these charges. People are often ruined after state and federal charges such as rape charges, battery charges, child pornography charges, and all other sex crimes charges. An attorney such as Jad Sarsour, a top criminal defense attorney in Virginia,.
Most of the crimes that require registration with the Virginia Sexual Offenders Registry are those that are violent or committed against children. Some of the necessary information during registration includes the offender’s current mailing and physical address, driver’s license number, and fingerprints.
The accused must also submit to be photographed by local law enforcement every two years. Anyone can access the registry online.
You could petition for removal from the registry after five years if you were convicted in Virginia. The court will require you to undergo a comprehensive psychological assessment, after which it will hold a hearing to establish whether or not to grant the petition under Virginia Law.
A reputable and proven sex crime lawyer can help you determine whether you are eligible for relief from the sex offender registry and offer you excellent representation during the hearing. If you’ve been accused of a sex crime contact Jad Sarsour, an experienced Virginia criminal sex crimes attorney who works with his clients thoroughly to get the case dismissed or your case lessened greatly. Call for a free consultation.
Defending against a sex crime charge requires comprehensive investigation and outstanding legal expertise. Contact us at Jad Sarsour, Criminal Defense Attorney Law Firm, for a free consultation, and for help with defense today by calling the number or via the email listed on our website for the best possible outcome. Jad Sarsour a Virginia criminal lawyer who has handled numerous sex crime cases.