If you or a loved one is at risk due to a sex crime in California, be very careful. The life-long consequences of a sex crime conviction can be catastrophic.
It is key to get a top California sex crimes lawyer on your side asap. All cases can potentially be won no matter how they appear at first.
Our award-winning sex crime attorneys will fight to get the best possible outcome, reduce or dismiss charges and keep you out of jail. We are ready to help immediately.
Experienced Sex Offender Attorney
We have an excellent record handling 1,000’s of sex crime and criminal cases including: indecent exposure, date rape, false sex crime charges, lewd conduct, prostitution, rape, sexual assault, Title IX, sexual battery, sex offender registration and statutory rape.
Former Prosecutors Fighting For You
Our former DAs know how police and prosecutors build sex offender cases in California and use this inside knowledge when building your defense.
Sex crime accusations can be devastating. False accusations are common and those accused often feel judged guilty before the facts are even heard. Since the passage of Megan’s Law, conviction results in life-long sex offender registration.
We fully understand the pressure you are facing and are 100% focused on protecting you and your future. We do not judge, we are only here to help.
Experience You Can Trust
Often it is not the facts of the case that result in a great resolution, but understanding the system, relationships and a smart presentation of your case to the judge or DA. Our Orange County sex crime attorneys use the power of their experience to help you.
You can rest assured our sex crime lawyer will bring the full force of our experience, reputation and formidable courtroom skills to achieve the best outcome possible.
We offer affordable fees and flexible payment plans.
Sex crimes resources
- Sex crime penalties and consequences
- Megan’s Law sex offender registration
- False rape and sex crime accusations
- How to beat a sex crime charge?
- Can a sex crime accuser ‘drop’ the charges?
- Sex crime statistics
California sex crime laws
There are a variety of misdemeanor and felony offenses under the ‘sex crimes’ category. They usually involve illegal or coerced sexual conduct against another person. Sex crimes have a statute of limitations or time limit by which charges must be made against the alleged offender.
Our California sex crimes attorney will skillfully defend you for all sex crimes in the California Penal Code and Federal Title IX, including:
- Date Rape | 261 pc
- Failure to Register as a Sex Offender | 290 pc
- Human Trafficking | 236.1 pc
- Indecent Exposure | 314 pc
- Lewd Conduct in Public | 647(a) pc
- Pandering | 266i pc
- Pimping | 266h pc
- Possession of Child Pornography | 311.11 pc
- Prostitution, Solicitation | 647(b) pc
- Sexual Assault on a College Campus | Title IX
- Sexual Assault, Sexual Battery | 243.4 pc
- Spousal Rape | 262 pc
- Statutory Rape | 261.5 pc
Hiring a Sex Crimes Attorney
The first thing to do if you or a loved one has been arrested or is being investigated for a sex crime is to hire an experienced Orange County sex crimes attorney. The life-long consequences of a sex crime conviction cannot be overstated.
Getting arrested and having your sex life examined in criminal courts is humiliating. No one wants the government involved in their sex life and relationships.
It is now more important than ever to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney to help navigate the traps in the system and law enforcement eager to show they are tough on alleged sex offenders.
Make sure you hire an experienced criminal defense lawyer with a proven track record in handling sex crime charges. Chudnovsky Law uses our experience, relationships and formidable courtroom skills to aggressively fight for the best possible outcome for you.
Sex crime consequences
The only thing worse than being charged with a sex crime is being convicted of a sex crime. Law enforcement agencies vigorously investigate and prosecute those charged. Depending on the charge, penalties and consequences of a conviction can include:
- Prison time, probation and/or parole.
- Lifetime sex offender registration with your home address, photo and sex crime published online.
- Potential loss of job and certain professional licenses.
- Loss of friends and social stigma.
- Criminal record.
- Fines and potentially substantial victim financial restitution.
If you are convicted and sentenced to prison, the unfortunate truth is that sex crime offenders are looked down upon and targeted by prison inmates.
“Crime of moral turpitude” affecting immigration
Most sex crimes are classified as “crimes of moral turpitude” under immigration law. If you’re convicted of a sex crime, it could lead to the loss of your right to become a United States citizen, apply for a green card or visas or even enter the country. Sex crimes can be deportable offenses for non-US citizens.
How to beat a sex crime charge
While sex crime and sexual assault charges can be terrifying, it is important to remember that you are innocent under law until the District Attorney proves guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. That is a very high burden of proof for the prosecutor.
The 3 most important things you can do to beat a sex crime charge:
1) Hire an experienced sex crimes attorney
You only have one opportunity to beat a sex crime and cannot afford to lose. A conviction will affect the rest of your life. Our award-winning sex crime lawyers know how to navigate all the land mines in the system, protect your rights and skillfully fight your charges in a trial if needed.
2) Don’t talk with anyone until you consult an attorney
Beware of recorded calls, text messages or creating evidence against yourself. If you believe you may be facing an investigation or sex crime charges, you have to protect yourself. There is nothing to be gained by confronting your accuser, defending your reputation or cooperating with a police investigation on your own until you’ve consulted a lawyer.
Even if you are 100% innocent, there are many traps and risks in speaking without an attorney present. Given the devastating potential consequences, consult an attorney at the first sign you may be facing an accusation.
3) Don’t wait for charges to be filed
The most important window for a criminal defense attorney’s work can be during the investigation, the first few days following an arrest, or prior to formal charges being filed. The sooner you have us working on your case, the sooner we can locate favorable defense evidence and witnesses, pursue a dismissal, negotiate a plea or prepare for a potential trial.
Many times we can also meet with the District Attorney before charges are filed to present evidence and witness statements with the goal of stopping or reducing the charges before they are even filed in court.
Legal defenses to sexual assault & sex crime charges
In order to be convicted of a sex crime, the Prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a crime was committed and you were the one who committed it.
There are many types of legal defenses to criminal charges. Some of the most common defenses our California criminal defense attorney utilizes for sex crimes are:
- The sex was consensual.
- Mistaken identity or witness identification
- You are the victim of a false accusation.
- There was no sexual contact.
- Insufficient evidence.
- You honestly and reasonably believed the accuser consented.
- Involuntary intoxication.
- You have an alibi and were elsewhere when the crime occurred.
Most cases are resolved without a trial
Our Orange County criminal defense lawyer usually obtains the best possible outcome without going to trial. Trials can publicly expose sensitive personal issues for the public record and be more costly than a skillfully negotiated dismissal or favorable plea deal.
But when a District Attorney is being unreasonable, there are instances where fighting a sex crime charge in a trial can be in the best interest of the defendant.
Megan’s Law sex offender registration
Under Megan’s Law (Penal Code 290.46 pc), most sex crime convictions require that you register as a sex offender every year. Registration involves going into a police station every year within 5 days of your birthday to register.
Your name, photo, home address and sex crime conviction information is published on a searchable map on the public Megan’s Law website. This can make it very difficult to live and work in many neighborhoods.
Prior to 2021, the registration requirement has been for life. Senate Bill 384 changed California’s lifetime-based sex offender registration system to a tier-based system beginning January 1, 2021. There are now three tiers of registration requirements for adult sex offenders: 10 years, 20 years, or life. Juvenile offenders are required to register as a sex offender for either five or 10 years.
Beginning July 1, 2021, registrants who meet certain requirements can petition the court, in their county of residence, for termination of their requirement to register as a sex offender. The time tiers increase according to severity of the offense:
- Tier 1: The least severe offenses such as misdemeanor sexual battery and other misdemeanor charges can petition to be removed from the registry after 10 years.
- Tier 2: Middle tier convictions such as lewd acts with a minor or rape by deception can petition to be removed from the registry after 20 years.
- Tier 3: The most severe convictions resulting from crimes such as rape or human trafficking will remain subject to the lifetime registration requirement. This tier is unchanged by SB 384.
Removal from the sex offender registration system is not automatic. Once an offender is eligible for their tier, their attorney must file a petition in Superior Court. The state has 60 days to review the request to confirm eligibility. If the petitioner has complied with all sex offender registration requirements and not been convicted of another crime, the court can grant termination of the status and registration requirement as a sex offender.
False rape and sex crime accusations
The nature of sex crime accusations is that they are easily exaggerated or falsely reported by a person with an agenda. Even though making a false accusation is a crime (148.5 pc), divorce, messy relationship breakups, child custody fights or emotional and mental health issues can all trigger false rape or sex crime allegations.
Our California criminal defence attorneys have seen many clients falsely accused and setup by people they loved and trusted. Little to no physical evidence is required to make an accusation and the system has little safeguards to protect innocent women and men wrongfully accused.
The criminal justice system is supposed to treat the accused as innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. But in the #MeToo era, overzealous DAs and police err on the side of an alleged victim even when there is only circumstantial evidence.
This is even though there are high profile cases like Nikki Yovino’s false rape case that have publicized how false charges destroyed the lives of 2 promising college students.
Government data and studies have found rates of false rape allegations varying widely from 5.9% (Northeastern University) to 8%(FBI) to 41% (Polygraph).
Even if you know a sex crime allegation against you is false, you must take it very seriously. It is key to hire a sex crime attorney with the expertise to ensure you are not wrongfully convicted. You cannot take any chances with such catastrophic risks.
Can a sex crime victim “drop” the charges?
The short answer is No.
Many wonder how to drop sex crime charges in California. Alleged victims frequently change their minds after time has passed and want charges dismissed. The reality is victims don’t have the authority to drop criminal charges.
Sex crime charges are brought by the government, not the victims. Prosecutors have sole discretion over whether charges will be filed or dismissed. They base their decision on the totality of evidence: police reports, physical injuries and evidence, 911 call transcript, witness testimony and the prior record of those involved.
Sex crime victims can refuse to testify
Victims have the right to refuse to testify in sex crime cases. The District Attorney may continue prosecuting even if the victim will not testify. The DA decides whether to move forward with prosecution based on the strength of other evidence in the case.
The Prosecutor may drop the case if they feel conviction is unlikely without the victim’s testimony. Often the lack of testimony leaves the DA with a circumstantial case that cannot meet the beyond a reasonable doubt standard. Defense merely has to show reasonable alternative explanations that do not involve the accused committing a crime.
Sex crime statistics
Legislatures across the United States have had success in steadily reducing rates of sex crimes by enacting tougher and tougher laws and penalties. But sexual assault and rape incidents are still a large scale issue in the U.S.
According to FBI data, for the entire United States in 2017 there were:
- 18,289 arrests for rape, 7.2 arrests per 100,000 inhabitants.
- 37,850 arrests for other sex offenses, 14.9 arrests per 100,000 inhabitants.
According to U.S. Department of Justice data:
- Sexual assaults and rapes in the U.S. decreased 31% from 431,840 in 2015 to 298,410 in 2016
- Only 23.2% of actual rape or sexual assaults were reported to police in 2016.
- The sexual offender is known to the victim 80% of the time.
- The sexual offender had a weapon in around 10% of incidents.
- College sexual assault victims were 83% female, 17% male – 1995 to 2013.
We represent clients throughout southern California from our Los Angeles and Orange County offices, including:
Los Angeles County: Alhambra, Beverly Hills, Brentwood, Buena Park, Burbank, Culver City, El Segundo, Encino, Glendale, Hollywood, Huntington Park, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Malibu, Manhattan Beach, Pasadena, Pomona, San Fernando, Santa Clarita, Santa Monica, Sherman Oaks, Simi Valley, Thousand Oaks, Torrance, Van Nuys, Venice, Ventura, West Hollywood, West Los Angeles and Woodland Hills.
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Orange County: Aliso Viejo, Anaheim, Brea, Buena Park, Costa Mesa, Cypress, Dana Point, Fountain Valley, Fullerton, Garden Grove, Huntington Beach, Irvine, La Habra, La Palma, Laguna Beach, Laguna Hills, Laguna Niguel, Laguna Woods, Lake Forest, Los Alamitos, Mission Viejo, Newport Beach, Orange, Placentia, Rancho Santa Margarita, San Clemente, San Juan Capistrano, Santa Ana, Seal Beach, Stanton, Tustin, Villa Park, Westminster and Yorba Linda.
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