Arrested for a Sex Crime?
If you are facing a charge involving a sex crime in Phoenix, you may already be aware of some of the ramifications of the allegations (such as registering as a sex offender) that exist even before an investigation is complete, and certainly before the case comes to an end. The fact is that when people read or hear about allegations of sexual offenses, they often conclude the allegations are true without even a hint of knowledge concerning the case. As a result, the stigma of a charge of sexual misconduct of any kind can affect your relationships with friends, family members, employers, and even total strangers. In addition, the threat of a conviction carries with it the possibility of lifetime registration as a sex offender, a consequence that can affect every aspect of your future.
Don’t face the allegations of a sex crime alone. At The Feldman Law Firm, we adhere to the principal that you are innocent until proven guilty, no matter what the charge against you. When you retain us as your sex crimes lawyer, you will always be treated with the respect you deserve.Adam Feldman, a former prosecutor and experienced criminal defense attorney, has a wealth of experience representing clients charged with a variety of sexual offenses. His track record in those cases is unparalleled, and includes many not guilty verdicts. He has the knowledge and background to provide you with the best defense possible when you are facing a sex crime charge.
If you plan on visiting our office about a sexual offense, we recommend completing the form for Adam’s review prior to your scheduled meeting. This will provide him with a base of facts to start the analysis of your case.
Call or email us today for a free consultation.
What Is a Sex Crime in Arizona?
The range of sex crimes enumerated in the Arizona Criminal Code is substantial, both in terms of the nature of the crimes and their penalties. The following are just some of the many sex crimes under Arizona law:
- Indecent Exposure (A.R.S. 13-1402). Showing your private parts to another person, and being “reckless” about whether that person would reasonably be offended or alarmed by your actions, is a crime in Arizona. Ordinarily it is a class 1 misdemeanor, but if the other person is under fifteen years of age, it is a class 6 felony. And if you are convicted of a felony violation of the statute, and have two prior convictions for indecent exposure or public sexual indecency involving a minor, even the minimum sentence involves years in prison.
- Public Sexual Indecency (A.R.S. 13-1403). Engaging in an act of sexual contact (usually touching), oral sexual contact, sexual intercourse or bestiality, with another person present, and being reckless about whether that person would reasonably be offended or alarmed by your conduct, constitutes the crime of public sexual indecency.
- Prostitution (A.R.S. 13-3201 et seq.). The Arizona prostitution statute criminalizes not only prostitution itself, but also enticing and procuring persons for purposes of prostitution; placing or detaining a person in a house of prostitution; receiving the earnings of a prostitute; causing one’s spouse to become a prostitute; child prostitution; residing in or maintaining a house of prostitution; pandering; and transporting a person for purposes of prostitution. Some violations of the prostitution laws are misdemeanors, while others, notably child prostitution (for example, causing a child to engage in prostitution or engaging in prostitution with a minor), are felonies, with statutory minimum prison sentences and increased penalties where the child is under the age of 15.
- Rape (A.R.S. 13-1406). The offense in Arizona is called “sexual assault.” It is defined as “intentionally or knowingly engaging in sexual intercourse or oral sexual contact with any person without consent of such person.” Sexual assault is a class 2 felony, and the statute contains specific rules regarding sentencing, including minimum sentences, enhanced sentences in the case of prior felony convictions, use of “date rape” drugs and causing serious physical injuries.
- Sexual conduct with a minor (A.R.S. 13-1405). This offense is commonly referred to as “statutory rape.” No force is required in order to be charged with this crime; rather, the lack of consent arises because a minor does not have the legal capacity to consent to sexual conduct. This crime is classified as a class 6 felony, unless the minor is under 15 years of age, or if the defendant is the minor’s parent (incest), legal guardian, teacher or clergyman, in which case it is a class 2 felony.
- Sexual Exploitation of Children (A.R.S. 13-3551 et seq.). Sexual exploitation of children includes a number of different but related crimes. They include (a) commercial sexual exploitation of a minor (using exploitive exhibition or other sexual conduct to produce a visual depiction of sexual conduct, including exposing the minor’s private parts); (b) sexual exploitation of a minor (recording or filming a child’s genitals or female breast for commercial purposes, including distribution, selling, receiving and transporting the film or other record); (c) luring a minor for sexual exploitation; (d) aggravated luring (use of electronic communication to transmit a visual depiction harmful to minors and offering or soliciting sexual conduct with the minor); and (e) portraying an adult as a minor in an exhibition of sexual conduct or exhibition. Most of these offenses are felonies, and if the child is under 15 years of age, enhanced sentencing provisions may apply.
- Molestation of a child (A.R.S. 13-1410). Child molestation is a class 2 felony. It consists of “intentionally or knowingly engaging in or causing a person to engage in sexual contact, except sexual contact with the female breast, with a child who is under fifteen years of age.”
- Bestiality (A.R.S. 1301411). Bestiality is defined as knowingly “[e]ngaging in oral sexual contact, sexual contact or sexual intercourse with an animal” or “[c]ausing another person to engage in oral sexual contact, sexual contact or sexual intercourse with an animal.” Bestiality is a class 6 felony, unless the defendant causes a minor under the age of 15 to engage in the conduct, in which case it is a class 2 felony.
- Continuous sexual abuse of a child (A.R.S. 13-1417). If, over a period of three months or more, a person engages in three or more acts of sexual conduct with a minor, sexual assault, or child molestation, and the child is under the age of 14, he can be charged with continuous sexual abuse of a child. This is also a class 2 felony.
- Sexual abuse (A.R.S. 13-1404). A person commits the crime of sexual abuse by intentionally or knowingly engaging in sexual contact (generally the direct or indirect touching of the genitals, anus or female breast) with a minor over the age of 15, or with a minor under the age of 15 if the contact is limited to the female breast. This is a class 3 felony or a class 5 felony, depending upon whether the alleged victim is under the age of 15.
- Sexual misconduct (A.R.S. 13-1418). If a licensed behavioral health professional, licensed psychiatrist or licensed psychologist knowingly engages in sexual intercourse with a client under their care, they may be charged with a class 6 felony. The offense does not include situations where the client is not under the professional’s care, nor does it include situations where the client was, but is no longer, under the professional’s care.
There are also a number of other offenses which, while not necessarily categorized as sex crimes, may relate in one way or another to sexual conduct, and depending upon the circumstances, may constitute sex crimes. These include human trafficking, stalking, certain domestic violence offenses, and sexual harassment.In addition to the harsh penalties associated with sex crimes, those convicted face lifetime registration as sex offenders (A.R.S. 13-3821 et seq.), with all the consequences that go with it. The act applies, and registration is required, for most of the offenses listed above.Finally, many sexual crimes involve children, and most, if the child is under the age of 15, are classified as “dangerous crimes against children” (A.R.S. 13-705). Sexual crimes included within the definition of dangerous crimes against children include molestation of a child; sexual conduct with a minor; commercial sexual exploitation of a minor; sexual exploitation of a minor; sexual abuse; taking a child for the purpose of prostitution; child prostitution; continuous sexual abuse of a child; sex trafficking; bestiality; luring a minor for sexual exploitation; and aggravated luring a minor for sexual exploitation. Dangerous crimes against children are further classified as first degree (completed offenses) and second degree (preparatory offenses such as attempt). In either case, special sentencing rules apply, and involve mandatory minimum prison terms, many of them lengthy.
What Can I Do If I am Charged with a Sexual Offense?
With the very real possibility of lengthy incarceration along with sex offender registration in the event of a conviction, it is essential that you choose an experienced Phoenix sex crimes lawyer if you are facing one or more of these charges. The best evidence of that experience, and the true test of an attorney’s skills, is his track record. At The Feldman Law Firm, we specialize in defending those charged with sex crimes. Adam Feldman has a wealth of experience in this area, both as a criminal defense attorney and as a former prosecutor. His track record is exemplary, and here are just a few of the cases where his skills as a sex crimes lawyer are evident:
- Case #1 – Sexual conduct with a minor (molestation of a child) – The defendant was accused by his step daughter of molesting her. The defendant denied the allegations and introduced evidence that the daughter was being untruthful, her goal being to destroy the relationship between the defendant and her mother. The defendant was found not guilty.
- Case #2 – Sexual conduct with a minor – As in Case #1, this was a charge of child molestation based upon false allegations by a minor. The defendant was found not guilty.
- Case #3 – Sexual assault – The defendant had sex with one of his co-workers. After the co-worker discovered that the defendant had no desire to continue with the relationship, she claimed that the defendant had raped her. The defendant was acquitted.
- Case #4 – Sexual conduct with a minor – As the result of a brief affair some 15 years earlier, the defendant fathered a child. The child lived with her mother outside the United States, but when the mother died, the girl, then 13 years old, came to live with her father, the defendant in this case. A claim of sexual molestation was brought by the daughter against her father. She claimed that she had been molested by him. Evidence was presented to the jury that the daughter’s claim was unfounded, and was the result of her anger at her father because of his new life. The jury did not believe that the defendant had committed the offense for which he was charged, and found him not guilty.
These are just of few of Mr. Feldman’s many successes in the area of defending clients charged with various sex crimes.
When people are charged with a sex crime, it may appear that they already have two strikes against them. First, the stigma of having been charged charge is apparent, and affects their relationships with friends and family. It may also have ramifications for their jobs and for their entire way of life. Second, whatever the reason, when it comes to sexual offenses, many people assume that the defendant is guilty, even when they have little in the way of facts concerning the case. At The Feldman Law Firm, we adhere to the principle that all defendants, regardless of the charge, are innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law. We also believe that all our clients should be treated with the respect they deserve, no matter what the allegations against them.
If you have been charged with a sex crime, the consequences of a conviction can be disastrous. You need an experienced sex crimes attorney at your side every step of the way. The Feldman Law Firm specializes in defending clients charged with sexual offenses. While no one can guarantee a result in a sex crimes case, or in any criminal case for that matter, we are the criminal defense firm of choice in this area. Our experience, dedication, and proven track record of success provide you with the help you need at his most difficult time in your life. Call us for a free consultation.