If you were arrested or charged with a sex crime and need help defending yourself in court, contact Rosenthal Kalabus & Therrian immediately. When anyone gets convicted of a sex crime, they have to register as a sex offender and end up with a criminal record. Even if the offense was a misdemeanor, it’s still a matter of public record, and anyone can search for the details of your case.
Rosenthal Kalabus & Therrian understands how a situation like this can upend your entire life. It affects your job, family, and reputation. You can depend on our experienced McKinney criminal defense lawyers to advocate for your rights and protect your future. We’ll work hard to prove your innocence or get the charges against you reduced.
In recognition of our attorneys’ successful handling of criminal defense cases, we have been honored with awards by numerous prestigious law organizations, such as Texas Super Lawyers and The National Trial Lawyers Association. We have helped countless defendants in your shoes secure a positive outcome, and we’ll use all of our experience to help you, too.
We have the resources, knowledge, and dedication to fight the charges you’re facing. Call us at (972) 369-0577 to schedule your free consultation.
Types of Sex Crimes
A sex crime typically involves illegal or coerced sexual acts. There are various types that range from a misdemeanor to a severe felony offense. However, any sexual offense committed in Texas comes with harsh penalties that could affect the rest of your life.
- Indecent exposure occurs when someone exposes their genitals or anus with the intent to gratify or arouse another person’s sexual desire without regard for whether it will offend anyone.
- Prostitution is the act of soliciting sexual behavior or engaging in sexual conduct in exchange for money or another form of payment, or it involves a person who promotes these acts.
- Sexual assault is knowingly and intentionally engaging in sexual activity with another person without their consent.
- Aggravated sexual assault refers to the intentional act of engaging in sexual activity without the other person’s consent and causing bodily injury, threatening harm, or attempting to cause death.
- Public lewdness is when someone knowingly engages in sexual acts in a public place.
- Possession of child pornography is when someone intentionally or knowingly possesses materials that contain minors engaging in sexual activities.
- Voyeurism occurs when an individual watches someone else with the intention of arousing or gratifying sexual desire without their consent.
- Unlawful dissemination of intimate visual content involves recordings, photographs, transmissions, videotapes, or broadcasts of invasive recordings of another person.
- Incest refers to someone who engages in sexual intercourse with an ancestor, descendant, or relative.
- Obscenity is an offense that involves the possession or promoting of obscene material or participating in an obscene performance.
There are also various offenses that a person could commit against a minor, such as:
- Sex trafficking
- Sexual performance by a child
- Online solicitation
- Sexual assault or aggravated sexual assault
- Distribution of obscene material
- Sexual abuse
Sentencing Guidelines for Sex Crimes in Texas
The judge might use the state’s mandatory minimum sentencing guidelines to determine a fair penalty for someone who commits a sex offense. They could also include the following factors in their decision:
- Prior criminal record
- Type of crime and its severity
- Relationship between the offender and the victim
- If injury or death resulted from the acts
- Age of the victim
Felony Sex Crimes Penalties
- First-degree felony: Five to 99 years in prison or life and a maximum of $10,000 in fines
- Second-degree felony: Two to 20 years in prison and a maximum of $10,000 in fines
- Third-degree felony: Two to ten years in prison and a maximum of $10,000 in fines
- State jail felony: 180 days to two years in jail and a maximum of $10,000 in fines
Examples of felony sexual offenses include:
- Online solicitation of a minor
- Indecency with a child
- Sexual assault and aggravated sexual assault
Misdemeanor Sex Crimes Penalties
- Class C misdemeanor: No more than a $500 fine
- Class B misdemeanor: Maximum of 180 days in jail and a $2,000 fine
- Class A misdemeanor: Maximum of one year in jail and a $4,000 fine
Examples of misdemeanor sexual offenses include:
- Public lewdness
- Indecent exposure
- Prostitution or solicitation of prostitution
Prison time and fines aren’t the only punishment you’ll have to worry about if a jury convicts you of a sex offense. You might also have to perform community service, attend counseling, or pay restitution to the victim. You also might face consequences within your professional and personal life, such as:
- Damaged reputation
- Trouble finding a place to live
- Permanent criminal record
- Difficulty applying for college or a job
Texas Sex Offender Registry
Specific sex crimes require that you register as a sex offender if you’re convicted. Examples include:
- Sexual assault
- Aggravated sexual assault
- Indecency with a child
- Prostitution or compelling prostitution
- Possession or promotion of child pornography
- Sex trafficking
- Solicitation of a minor online
- Sexual performance by a child
- Indecent exposure (second offense)
- Continuous sexual abuse of a child
- Possession or promotion of obscene material
When you register, you get classified under one of three risk levels:
- Low: Unlikely to commit a sexual offense.
- Moderate: May continue committing sex crimes.
- High: Pose a threat of committing a sexual offense.
You also have to include various personal details that become available to the public. You must register upon your release from prison or jail. Failure to register is a felony and could result in jail time. The duration of your registry depends on the type of crime you were convicted of committing. Some offenses require lifetime registration, while others require a maximum of ten years.
Every time you move or any of the information on the registry changes, you must update it promptly. You also have to verify the information on the website once a year or multiple times a year, depending on your county or city of residence. There are different rules for different parts of Texas.
Common Defenses Used Against Sex Crime Charges
If you were arrested or charged with a sex crime, Rosenthal Kalabus & Therrian will review the details of your case to determine the best defense strategy. Our job is to discount the prosecution’s theories and convince the jury that you’re not guilty. The defense we use will depend on the charges you’re facing and the circumstances surrounding your case. For example, we may claim one of the following defenses:
- Innocent. Probably the most basic defense is to prove that you didn’t actually commit the offense. We might establish a solid alibi that places you far from where the crime occurred. We could also poke holes in the victim’s story or disprove witness testimony.
- Illegally obtained evidence. Sometimes law enforcement doesn’t follow proper procedures when they’re collecting evidence. If they violated your rights by performing an illegal search and seizure, we could file a motion to suppress, so it isn’t used against you during the trial.
- False accusations. Many sex crimes cases are a “he said, she said” situation. We might be able to prove that the alleged victim had a motive to falsely accuse you of the offense as an act of revenge.
- Incorrectly identified. There are times when witnesses identify the wrong perpetrator or allow investigators to direct them towards a specific person in a lineup.
- Mental illness. We could claim that you were mentally incapable of understanding what you were doing when you committed the crime. A documented mental illness or incompetency proves an offender didn’t have an understanding or knowledge of their actions.
- Affirmative defenses. This strategy admits to committing the sexual act but denies that it was a criminal offense. It might make sense to use an affirmative defense if:
- The victim gave consent to the sexual activity.
- The defendant didn’t use force, threats, or cause duress to the victim.
- The defendant and victim were married at the time of the sexual act.
- In cases of statutory rape, the defendant wasn’t more than three years older than the victim.
Contact Rosenthal Kalabus & Therrian
Our McKinney sex crimes defense lawyers will fight hard to protect your rights, freedom, and future. We know it’s stressful when you’re facing a possible conviction. You could lose your job, ruin your reputation, and create strain within your family. We want to ensure you avoid harsh penalties and have the opportunity to rebuild your life. Whether we get the case dismissed or the charges reduced, you can depend on us to find the right strategy for your situation.
We have a dedicated legal team that will provide one-on-one attention and create a defense that meets your goals. We’ll never force you into doing what we think you should do. Ultimately, the final decision is up to you. It’s your future at stake, and we want you to feel comfortable with the legal option you choose. We’ll thoroughly review the alleged sex crime, obtain evidence that proves your innocence, and aggressively fight against the prosecutor in court.
At Rosenthal Kalabus & Therrian, we believe in the importance of availability. We offer 24/7 services so you can contact us whenever you need us. Day or night, if you have a question about your case or you’re looking for a status update, someone will be here to take your call. When you hire one of our McKinney sex crimes defense lawyers, you’ll always be a priority.
If you’re facing a sex crimes charge or need assistance overturning a conviction, call Rosenthal Kalabus & Therrian at (972) 369-0577 today. We’ll schedule your initial free consultation and begin creating a solid strategy to get the charges reduced or dropped.