Sexual Assault of a Child
Very few criminal charges are prosecuted more vigorously than a sex crime involving acts with children. There is a general consenous that a sex crime against a child is one of the most heinous in the penal code. Prison sentences are routinely offered for these types of crimes. Life time Sex Offender Registration is mandated for many of these offenses. This is why it is absolutely necessary that a person accused of this sex crime obtain experienced, dedicated and talented defense counsel. The State of Texas will be looking to punish individuals, irrespective of their guilt. We are supremly experienced in handling Police Investigations of Sexual Assault of a Child.
Aggravated Sexual Assault
Penetration of a child younger than 17 years old, or causing a child to be penetrated for the purpose of gratifying a sexual desire will be considered sexual assault in Texas. If the child is 14 years old or younger, it will be charged as an Aggravated Sexual Assault. This carries with it the possible punishment of life in prison.
Indecency With a Child
Indecency with a child will carry with it less severe penalties. A touching of a child’s breast, anus or private areas for the purpose of satisfing a sexual desire is a second degree felony. However, in our experience it is difficult for the prosecution to draw the fine line between touching and penetrating. This is especially so when a child is very young, and her outcry is vaguely described.
The Role of CPS
A large proportion of cases begin with an investigation by Children’s Protective Services(CPS). The stated purpose of CPS is to investigate physical and/or emotional abuse of children and to take action to protect those being injured. However, a component of law enforcement is attached to CPS at the Children’s Assessment Center and it investigates all potential criminal acts. Although it will be CPS that initially interviews the child who claims abuse, the interview is immediately shared with law enforcement and the criminal investigation begins.
Defenses for Sexual Assault of a Child
One of the most frightening things about an accusation made by a child is that it is usually made long after the fact and the individual being accused may have no clue what motivated the false accusation. Someone accused of sexual assault of a child may feel that there is no hope and that the child will automatically be believed. In our experience we have learned there is a multitude of reasons for a child to fabricate such a claim. Depending on her age, a child does not know that a careless statement about sexual actvity will trigger an avalanche of suspicion and accusation. It is difficult for a child to go back on a claim, especially when a parent is involved or government officials have geared up to protect her from “harm”. The lawyers at Chernoff Law understand that innocent people get caught up in the universal desire to protect children. Our clients often get their cases dismissed or reduced, despite the horendous accusations. Give us a call and lets discuss your defense.