Sex Crime Lawyers in Delaware County
Fighting to Clear Your Name in Franklin County, Union County, Marion County, & Morrow County
An accusation of a sex crime is one of the most damaging allegations that an individual can face. Even if you are entirely innocent, you may have difficulty proving your innocence and shaking off the stigma that this accusation brings. For this reason, it is crucial that you have an experienced sex crimes defense attorney on your side.
If you or a loved one were arrested or if you believe that you could be investigated for an alleged sex-related crime, it will be in your best interest to not say anything to authorities. Even if you are innocent of any wrongdoing, anything you say could be used against you later on and could lead to a criminal conviction. Authorities will investigate the alleged crimes and will often seek to gather damaging statements from individuals that prosecutors can use to obtain convictions. These statements are used to send people to prison and force them to pay hefty fines.
Brian Jones knows what it’s like to be falsely accused of a crime. He is an experienced attorney who shows genuine concern for his clients and applies his expertise to fight for his clients’ freedoms. He understands the price that criminal allegations pose on people and how being accused of a sex crime can impact the relationships they have with family, friends, and employers.
Being listed on the sex offender registration would prevent a convicted sex offender from living, working, or traveling near schools, parks, and other locations where children normally are, making the offender’s life extremely difficult to complete basic tasks.
Sex Crime Penalties:
Most sex crimes are felony offenses, with the potential of up to $25,000 in fines and a prison sentence of as long as 11 years; however, it is possible to face a sentence that is a virtual life sentence. Aggravated charges usually lead to longer prison sentences. Do not hesitate to retain an attorney if you have been charged or accused of a sex crime of any kind.
The Law Office of Brian Jones often takes cases that have been turned down by other firms. Our colleagues refer sex crime cases to us based on the experience we have in this area of the law. With our firm on the case, we fully intend to defend your rights as we’d want ours defended.
Time is one of the most important pieces of the defense in your case — contact our firm immediately so we can start investigating the facts and create a proper defense plan.
Our team of sex crime lawyers in Delaware County know how to fight your charges aggressively. They will do everything they can to get the best possible outcome for your case. The sooner you start building a defense against your sex crime charges, the better.
You can schedule an appointment by calling us at (740) 883-3400 or by using the contact form. Se habla español.
How Does Sex Offender Registration Work?
In Ohio, the length of an offender’s registration requirement is directly correlated to the offender’s classification.
- Tier I: Offenders must register annually for a term of 15 years. In some cases, Tier I offenders are required to register annually for only 10 years.
- Tier II: Offenders must register every 180 days for a term of 25 years.
- Tier III: Offenders must register every 90 days indefinitely.
In Ohio, if the underlying offense is a felony, an offender’s failure to register is a felony of the fifth degree; otherwise, the failure to register is a misdemeanor of the first degree.
Are There Specialized Units for Sex Crimes Cases?Law enforcement agencies and prosecutor offices in Ohio often have specialized units that are dedicated to investigating cases of a sex crime. The units often assist in collecting evidence and helping prosecutors obtain convictions.
Are the Consequences Harsher if My Sex Crime Involves Children?When the accuser is a minor, prosecutors will aggressively pursue maximum sentences. The possible penalties for a conviction can also be enhanced, depending on the specific crime that an individual has been accused of.
What are the Consequences of a Sex Crimes Conviction?
In the state of Ohio, being convicted of any criminal offense carries many other penalties beyond just possible incarceration and fines. People who are convicted of a sex crime not only might have to register as a sex offender, but depending on the severity of the criminal offenses, they may also lose public housing benefits, their rights to possess firearms, and the ability to serve on a jury or hold public office.
Sex crime convictions can also make individuals ineligible for certain kinds of employment and lead to some people having professional licenses revoked.
What if I’ve Been Accused of a Child Pornography Offense?Alleged offenders accused of child pornography offenses in Ohio can face state or federal charges. Prosecutors frequently seek maximum punishments for these crimes, making it critical for any person accused of one of these crimes to immediately seek the help of an experienced attorney.
What is a Sexually Oriented Offense Protection Order (SOOPO)?
Even if the accused is not charged with a sex crime, an accuser can still seek a protection order against that person by filing a petition for a Sexually Oriented Offense Protection Order (SOOPO). The SOOPO process is similar to the procedure involved in many domestic violence civil protection orders, but there are some differences.
The general division of the Common Pleas Court in which the alleged victim lives handles SOOPO petitions as opposed to the court’s domestic relations division, and SOOPOs cannot make any rulings on child custody or order the accused to pay spousal or child support. A SOOPO can still impose several different restrictions on the accused that limit their contact or the distance at which they can be within the vicinity of the accuser.
What Does the Court Process of a Sex Crimes Case Look Like?
After the accused has been arrested for an alleged sex crime, they may have to make multiple court appearances.
Some of the steps in these cases generally include:
- Arraignment: During the accused’s first court appearance, they are informed of the criminal charges against them and asked to enter an initial plea. A judge will also determine bail and any accompanying conditions of bail.
- Pre-trial hearings: The accused’s lawyer will have the opportunity to file a motion for discovery in order to review all of a prosecutor’s evidence. Both parties may be able to file motions relating to that evidence or other issues, and the criminal defense attorney and prosecutor will generally begin or continue to negotiate a possible plea agreement.
- Trial: If the prosecutor and defense lawyer cannot reach any kind of plea deal, the judge will typically set a date for trial. At trial, the prosecution and the defense present their cases to a jury that decides whether the accused is guilty of the alleged sex crime.
- Appeals: If the accused is convicted of a sex crime, they may still be able to file an appeal with a higher court. Criminal appeals must be based on some kind of error in the lower court’s handling of the sex crime case, not mere dissatisfaction with the outcome.
What Evidence Can Be Used for or Against Me in a Sex Crimes Case?
Prosecutors and the State have the burden of proof. This means they need to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt in order to convict the alleged offenders of sex crimes. In order to accomplish this, a prosecutor will often present various forms of physical evidence that a sex crime was committed.
The most common type of evidence in most sex crime cases is the testimony of the alleged accuser, but law enforcement will typically seek DNA evidence. Other evidence may include photographs of injuries or witness statements.
How Does a Sex Crime Investigation Unfold?
After the accuser has reported an alleged sex crime, law enforcement will attempt to collect any evidence from the scene of the alleged crime and make an effort to speak to the accused. Alleged accusers may submit to rape kit examinations, which allow medical professionals to collect forensic evidence.
When police do speak to the accused, they will try to conduct an interrogation, which may include the possible use of a polygraph (lie detector) test. Anybody who is being investigated for any kind of alleged sex crime should not make any statement to law enforcement without an attorney.
What Defenses May I Be Able to Use for My Case?
When you or a loved one is under investigation or has been arrested for any kind of alleged sex crime in Ohio, that individual may be able to use any one of a number of defenses to possibly have the alleged criminal charges reduced or dismissed.
Your case will have specific details and each defense can differ, but some of the most common defenses in sex crime cases include:
- False accusations: Some alleged offenders may be falsely accused of sex crimes by ex-spouses or former partners out of revenge or for other ulterior motives.
- Lack of evidence: Prosecutors may be unable to convict alleged offenders for sex crimes when they do not have any or enough physical evidence to prove that a sexual offense was committed.
- Consent: Alleged victims may claim that sex crimes were committed when they originally consented to sexual conduct with the alleged offenders.
- Mistaken identity: In some cases of alleged sex offenses, the alleged victims may misidentify their alleged offenders and cause police to arrest innocent people.
- Affirmative defenses: Depending on the specific sex crime a person is accused of, the alleged offender may be able to raise an affirmative defense in which they admit to the sexual conduct in question but cannot be charged with a crime because a certain fact negates the criminal charges.
What Sex Crimes Charges Can an Attorney Defend Me From?
- Rape: Ohio Revised Code § 2907.02 defines rape as engaging in sexual conduct with another person who is not the spouse of the alleged offender or who is the spouse of the alleged offender but is living separate and apart from the alleged offender, when the alleged offender substantially impairs the other person’s judgment or control by administering any drug, intoxicant, or controlled substance to the other person surreptitiously or by force, threat of force, or deception; the other person is less than 13 years of age, whether or not the alleged offender knows the age of the other person; or the other person’s ability to resist or consent is substantially impaired because of a mental or physical condition or because of advanced age, and the alleged offender knows or has reasonable cause to believe that the other person’s ability to resist or consent is substantially impaired because of a mental or physical condition or because of advanced age.
- Sexual battery: Ohio Revised Code § 2907.03 generally defines sexual battery as engaging in sexual conduct with another person who is not the spouse of the alleged offender when the alleged offender knowingly coerces the other person to submit by any means that would prevent resistance by a person of ordinary resolution, the alleged offender knows that the other person’s ability to appraise the nature of or control the other person’s own conduct is substantially impaired, the alleged offender knows that the other person submits because the other person is unaware that the act is being committed, the other person is a minor, or other specific circumstances.
- Unlawful sexual conduct with a minor: Ohio Revised Code § 2907.04 defines unlawful sexual conduct with a minor as an alleged offender 18 years of age or older engaging in sexual conduct with another person who is not the spouse of the alleged offender when the alleged offender knows the other person is 13 years of age or older but less than 16 years of age, or the alleged offender is reckless in that regard.
- Sexual imposition: Ohio Revised Code § 2907.06 defines sexual imposition as having sexual contact with another person who is not the spouse of the alleged offender, causing another person who is not the spouse of the alleged offender to have sexual contact with the alleged offender, or causing two or more other persons to have sexual contact when either the alleged offender knows that either the sexual contact is offensive to the other person or one of the other persons, the other person’s or one of the other person’s ability to appraise the nature of or control the alleged offender’s or touching person’s conduct is substantially impaired, the other person or one of the other persons submits because of being unaware of the sexual contact, the other person or one of the other persons is 13 years of age or older but less than 16 years of age and the alleged offender is at least 18 years of age and four or more years older than such other person, or the alleged offender is a mental health professional.
- Gross sexual imposition: Ohio Revised Code § 2907.05 defines gross sexual imposition as either the alleged offender purposely compelling the other person or one of the other persons to submit by force or threat of force, substantially impairing the judgment or control of the other person or of one of the other persons by administering any drug, intoxicant, or controlled substance to the other person surreptitiously or by force, threat of force, or deception, or knowing that the judgment or control of the other person or of one of the other persons is substantially impaired because of a mental or physical condition or because of advanced age, and the alleged offender knows or has reasonable cause to believe that the ability to resist or consent of the other person or of one of the other persons is substantially impaired because of a mental or physical condition or because of advanced age.
- Child pornography: Federal law and state law both prohibit the production, transportation, and possession of child pornography. The specific criminal offense an alleged offender may be charged with depends on the specific activity and material involved.
- Prostitution: State law in Ohio establishes multiple offenses relating to prostitution. Compelling prostitution is defined under Ohio Revised Code § 2907.21, promoting prostitution is established under Ohio Revised Code § 2907.22, procuring prostitution is defined under Ohio Revised Code § 2907.23, and solicitation for prostitution is established under Ohio Revised Code § 2907.23.
What is the Legal Definition of a Sex Crime?
Ohio Revised Code § 2907.01(A) defines sexual conduct as “vaginal intercourse between a male and female; anal intercourse, fellatio, and cunnilingus between persons regardless of sex; and, without privilege to do so, the insertion, however slight, of any part of the body or any instrument, apparatus, or other object into the vaginal or anal opening of another. Penetration, however slight, is sufficient to complete vaginal or anal intercourse.”
Under Ohio Revised Code § 2907.01(B), sexual contact is defined as “any touching of an erogenous zone of another, including without limitation the thigh, genitals, buttock, pubic region, or, if the person is a female, a breast, for the purpose of sexually arousing or gratifying either person.” Sexual activity is defined under Ohio Revised Code § 2907.01(C) as sexual conduct or sexual contact, or both.
What Does It Say About Sex Crimes in the Ohio Revised Code?
Criminal offenses that are considered sex crimes are listed under Chapter 2907 of the Ohio Revised Code.
It is a common misconception to believe that sex crimes are usually committed by complete strangers. Alleged offenders in sex cases are typically people that the alleged victims knew personally, such as friends, family, or co-workers. Individuals who are convicted of sex offenses often face severe penalties that not only include lengthy terms of incarceration and substantial fines, but also possible requirements to register as sex offenders for several years — or possibly life.
Why Do I Need a Sex Crimes Lawyer for My Case?
If someone accuses you of sexual assault or some other sex crime, your reputation and future are on the line. Without legal counsel, you could severely damage your case and hurt your chances to obtain justice. Our attorneys have extensive criminal defense experience and the know-how to investigate the charges that you face. We will build a strong defense that represents your side of the story in court.
We defend clients who are charged with many types of federal and state-level sex crimes, including those related to Chapter 2907: SEX OFFENSES and Chapter 2950: SEXUAL PREDATORS, HABITUAL SEX OFFENDERS, SEXUALLY ORIENTED OFFENDERS:
- Possessing, distributing, and manufacturing child pornography
- Sexual activity with a minor
- Statutory rape
- Crimes committed via the internet
- All forms of rape
- Other forms of sexual violence and assault
- Enticement or solicitation of a prostitute
- Title IX hearings for college students
We fight to keep our clients’ names off the sex offender registry. Registration as a sex offender can limit where you can live and may impact your civil rights. Our lawyers will work to minimize or eliminate the potential of registering as a sex offender.
“They are very efficient and helped us when we had a problem that could have cost our boy going to prison for a long time .” - Jacqueline E.
“I was confident they do not simply want my money, what they want is to provide competent counsel.” - Patrick J.
“They treated us like family clearly intent on listening, understanding and providing the best direction.” - Tony W.