If you are speaking to a police officer about a sex crime, your case has already started. As soon as you have been accused of this type of crime, the investigation begins. This means that anything you say to the officer can be used against you. For this reason, it is important to have a Miami criminal defense lawyer by your side as soon as you know that you are being accused of a sex crime.
There are many things to consider when you have been accused of a sex crime and our Miami criminal defense lawyers will be able to discuss all of these things with you. This includes whether or not you should take the case to trial. In reality, most cases do not make it to trial and are decided instead during pre-trial negotiations. Deciding to go to trial is a difficult decision that a lawyer can help you with.
Types of Charges
In the state of Florida, a sex crime may be considered a felony or a misdemeanor. Misdemeanors are less serious than felonies and come with a maximum punishment of up to one year in jail. A felony case is more serious than a misdemeanor charge and can be punished with more than a year in prison. The penalties and fines are dependent on the type of charge as well as the defendant’s criminal history.
Another difference is that a misdemeanor conviction is served in the county jail whereas a felony conviction can be served in state prison. The long-term consequences are significant as well. Misdemeanors have fewer consequences over your lifetime. A felony conviction will often require you to register as a sexual predator or sexual offender, which means you are not be allowed to live in many areas of a city or county.
Different Factors to Consider
As mentioned, one of the biggest decisions to make in a sex crime case is whether or not you should go to trial. Most often, it is recommended to eliminate the stress, time, and money that come with dealing with a long trial. Perhaps the most important concern is the probability of whether or not a jury will convict you. You will need to consider all of the evidence before making this decision.
After you have been arrested for a sex crime, the prosecutor is going to do a “screening.” This is simply a review of your case. After reviewing the case, the prosecutor will then determine whether or not to pursue it. If you hire a quality Miami criminal defense lawyer to handle your case, your lawyer may be able to persuade the prosecutor to take no action or to file for less serious charges.
When it comes down to it, if you have been accused with any type of sex crime, hiring a criminal defense lawyer is going to be your best course of action.
We handle a variety of criminal law cases, so call us now if you have any questions.
View more contact information here: Miami Criminal Defense Lawyer.