Phoenix Sex Crimes Lawyer

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Phoenix Sex Crimes Attorney

Sex crimes are not taken lightly by law enforcement in Arizona. Additionally, prosecutors and courts tend to apply extremely harsh sentences for those convicted of these offenses. If you are facing allegations of any sex-related crime, building and effectively presenting a strong defense may be vital not only to mitigating short-term consequences and criminal sanctions but also to preserving your future prospects for decades to come.

Retaining a Phoenix sex crimes lawyer should be a priority for anyone who finds themselves in this kind of situation. An experienced defense attorney’s assistance can make all the difference in how the initial investigation proceeds, what kinds of options you have during trial, and what outcome your cause ultimately has.

COMMON SEX-RELATED CRIMINAL CHARGES

Although sexual assault is a common example of a sex crime that may be harshly prosecuted under Arizona Statute §13-1406, it is far from the only criminal charge that fits into this category. Other offenses that our Phoenix sex crime defense attorneys can help defend against include:

The last of these is an especially broad and serious offense, covering various actions related to the possession, purchase, distribution, promotion, and/or production of child pornography. Additionally, prostitution and solicitation can sometimes be considered sex crimes. Unlike most other sex-related criminal offenses, these crimes are often considered misdemeanors rather than felonies and are generally prosecuted as municipal offenses in Phoenix as opposed to violations of state law.

Each type of sex offense involves unique factors and potential penalties, making it important to discuss the specifics of the case with a skilled Phoenix attorney.

FELONY SEX CRIMES IN PHOENIX

Alleged offenses involving children will always be prosecuted as felonies. For instance, indecent exposure and public sexual indecency are normally misdemeanors unless the alleged victim is a child. The same is true of other offenses that would typically be misdemeanors, like prostitution.

Certain types of sex crimes are always felony offenses, regardless of the alleged victim’s age. These include sexual abuse, sexual assault, and human trafficking. As the experienced lawyers at our firm can explain, most sex offenses are felonies—misdemeanor charges are rare for this type of crime.

SENTENCING SCHEME FOR SEXUALLY BASED OFFENSES

Sex crimes have their own sentencing scheme, especially for those involving children under the age of 15. These types of sex offenses, classified as dangerous crimes against children, carry significant punishments. A convicted person can expect a prison sentence of at least ten years for each act, and each sentence is generally consecutive.

Most sex crimes also have additional penalties, including sex offender registration, lifetime probation, mandatory treatment, and counseling. Regardless of what type of sex crime a person faces, they need representation from a relentless Phoenix lawyer to defend against severe consequences.

TYPES OF INVESTIGATION TACTICS FOR ALLEGED SEX CRIMES

Generally, police must approach these cases differently than other kinds of criminal charges. Usually, a case begins with an accusation and an interview of the alleged victim, as there are often no witnesses to the crime. For charges involving minors, the police will work with an investigator trained in interviewing children. Based on the interview, the police will try to gather corroborating evidence, including physical evidence like DNA.

In many cases, police are limited in what they can gather and must turn to more creative tactics. One common technique is called a one-party consent call or confrontation call. The police have an alleged witness or victim question or confront the suspect over the phone on a recorded call. The aim is to get the suspect to admit to the allegation over the secretly recorded phone call. Anyone who thinks they might be under investigation for any type of sex crime should call a Phoenix attorney right away to defend against these tactics.

Prosecutors must prove multiple factors to secure convictions for sex crimes. These factors vary from case to case, making it essential to work on a tailored defense strategy with an experienced attorney. At Grand Canyon Law Group, our former prosecutors know how to defend against all types of sex crimes in Phoenix. We will listen to your side of the story, investigate the situation, and determine an effective strategy for your case.

MISDEMEANOR VS. FELONY SEX OFFENSES

In Arizona, there are many misdemeanor sexual offenses, such as indecent exposure and public sexual indecency. However, if these acts are allegedly committed in front of a minor, they become felony charges. Sexual abuse, sexual conduct with a minor, molestation of a child, sexual assault, and many other sexual offenses are felonies, regardless of whether the alleged victim is an adult or minor. A skilled Phoenix lawyer can explain what to expect for different types of sex crime charges during a consultation.

Some sexual offenses are classified as violent crimes, which are punished harshly. If the person has a history of committing felonies or if the circumstances involve a young child, the defendant faces a life sentence without parole. Prosecutors are aggressive in these cases and often push for the maximum sentence.

EVIDENCE IN PHOENIX SEX CRIME CASES

Arizona prosecutes and sentences sex crime cases harshly, and Phoenix has some of the strictest laws in the state for sex offense punishments. Almost every offense mandates sex offender registration for life. Because these offenses carry such harsh consequences, prosecutors have significant power to charge these crimes based on various forms of evidence.

Additionally, local prosecutors are generally well-trained in investigating and bringing these charges. You need a skilled lawyer equally trained in representing those accused. At Grand Canyon Law Group, we know how to limit the prosecution’s evidence in Phoenix sex crime cases and fight to protect your rights at every stage.

TYPES OF EVIDENCE IN SEX CRIME CASES

Usually, the main form of evidence in sex crime cases is testimony from the alleged victim. The credibility of a sex crime victim is crucial to the prosecution’s case. The jury will listen to their testimony and determine whether they believe them.

To support that evidence, prosecutors rely on corroboration—something to lend credibility to the alleged victim. This may involve an admission by the suspect to the police. The police may try to gather this evidence using a one-party consent call or confrontation call. This involves the alleged victim (or their friend or family member) calling the suspect and secretly recording them to try and get them to admit to the crime.

Other forms of evidence may include DNA or medical evidence. In rare cases, there may be witnesses to the event. A seasoned Phoenix attorney can review the evidence in a sex crimes case and work to build a strong defense.

HOW DO JUDGES TREAT EVIDENCE FOR SEX OFFENSES?

Judges must weigh in and decide various issues involving evidence—for instance, what evidence is admissible at trial. They must be careful about admitting certain types of testimony, hearsay, or character evidence. Our skilled Phoenix lawyers can work to protect a defendant’s rights and ensure that any evidence admitted to the sex crime trial was properly collected. If the police secured evidence by violating a suspect’s rights, we could work to get it thrown out.

CONSTITUTIONAL ISSUES IN SEXUAL CRIME CASES

In many sex crime cases, the police may interview a suspect in custody but fail to read their Miranda rights. They may also use promises, threats, or other coercive techniques to secure an admission. This violates the suspect’s Constitutional rights, and our attorneys can work to get the evidence excluded.

There may also be Fourth Amendment issues involving police search and seizure procedures. If they did not have the authority to conduct a search, any resulting evidence might have been illegally obtained. Working with a dedicated local attorney is crucial to limiting the prosecution’s evidence in a sex crime case.

CONTACT A PHOENIX ATTORNEY TO DISCUSS SEX CRIME EVIDENCE

If you suspect or believe you are being investigated for a sexual offense, contact a lawyer immediately. The sooner you reach out, the sooner we can work to prevent your arrest and stop the police from gathering certain types of information.

At Grand Canyon Law Group, we know the evidence in Phoenix sex crime cases that the prosecution is looking for. Our dedicated defense attorneys are former prosecutors with years of experience handling these cases.

INVESTIGATING SEX CRIME ALLEGATIONS IN PHOENIX

Sex crimes are thoroughly investigated and harshly prosecuted in Arizona. Generally, these cases begin with an allegation to the police, either by the alleged victim or someone close to them. The police will contact that person for an interview; if there is sufficient information to warrant potential criminal charges, the police may move forward with an investigation and eventual arrest.

All local police departments may investigate sex crimes. Usually, these agencies have a Child Crimes Unit, Family Offenses Unit, or Special Victims Unit of dedicated detectives trained and educated in these specific offenses. After someone makes a report, the police may conduct a medical examination to gather DNA evidence if the event happened in the last 72 hours.

From there, they will try to gather additional evidence to support the allegations. If there are witnesses to the event, they will interview those witnesses. They may get a search warrant for the location of the alleged offense. In these early stages of a sex crime investigation, a suspect may not even know they have been accused. As soon as the suspect learns they are under investigation for a sex crime, they should contact an experienced local attorney to discuss their situation.

CONFRONTATION CALLS IN SEX OFFENSE INVESTIGATIONS

In sex crime investigations, the police often conduct a one-party consent call or confrontation call with the suspect. This usually involves the alleged victim or their family member calling the suspect on a secretly recorded phone call. They will try to get the suspect to admit to the sexual offense. If the suspect admits to anything, the police will likely arrest them and take them into custody for an interview.

The police may also talk to the suspect, trying to get incriminating statements. Many people make the mistake of waiving their rights to an attorney and speaking to the detective without legal representation. In any sex crime investigation, it is always best to call a Phoenix lawyer before speaking with the police.

CONSTITUTIONAL ISSUES WHEN INVESTIGATING SEX CRIMES

The most common constitutional issues in sex crime investigations are Fourth and Fifth Amendment violations. The police may violate a suspect’s right to privacy under the Fourth Amendment through search and seizure of their property. If the police obtained a statement from a suspect without reading their Miranda rights or using force, threats, or coercion, this violates the Fifth Amendment.

Throughout a sex crimes investigation in Phoenix, the diligent lawyers at Grand Canyon Law Group work to protect a suspect’s rights and defend against police tactics. This is crucial in limiting the evidence the prosecution can use in a potential case. The prosecution may drop the charges altogether if they cannot gather enough evidence.

Sex crimes are unique from other alleged offenses, as there are often no witnesses. The police are trained in specific tactics for investigating these complex allegations. When you face these charges, you need a defense attorney with the same experience and knowledge.

Grand Canyon Law Group knows how to handle sex crime investigations in Phoenix the right way. We are experienced in identifying issues with the prosecution’s case and limiting the amount of evidence they can bring to trial.

DEFENSE STRATEGIES IN PHOENIX SEX CRIME CASES

When you are accused of a sex crime, you may be unsure what to do or how to protect your future. Your best option for resolving the situation with minimal impact on your life is to avoid talking to the police and contact legal counsel immediately. The right lawyer can strategize and develop the best defense for the situation.

At Grand Canyon Law Group, our former prosecutors have years of experience handling these cases. We can explain potential defense strategies in Phoenix sex crime cases and work tirelessly to preserve your future.

FIRST STEPS IN DEFENDING A SEX CRIME CASE

If a person is under investigation but has not yet been charged with a sex crime, the best defense strategy is for an attorney to shield them from law enforcement. It is crucial for suspects to avoid answering police questions and prevent potentially incriminating statements.

Our Phoenix lawyers can also begin investigating the sex crime allegations and building a strong defense. Once the defendant has been charged, legal counsel must gather evidence, determine the credibility of the victims or witnesses, and analyze the state’s case.

BUILDING A DEFENSE STRATEGY FOR SEXUAL OFFENSES

To build a strong defense against sex crime charges, our seasoned Phoenix attorneys will look at every piece of the case. One potential avenue for defense is to analyze the accuser’s motivation—whether they have a reason to lie or falsely accuse someone. This also involves examining how the jury may perceive the alleged victim and their credibility.

Another option is to look for Constitutional issues in the case that may lead to evidence being suppressed or thrown out. If the police violated a suspect’s rights during the investigation, they might be unable to use the evidence they gathered improperly. Our legal team works to defend a suspect’s Constitutional rights against illegal police tactics during sex crime investigations.

There may even be ways to defend against DNA and medical evidence in a sex crime case. These types of evidence are not impenetrable, and there may be alternate explanations for why a person’s DNA is in a specific location. The experienced lawyers at our firm can work with experts to review scientific and medical evidence and look for any inadequacies. Legal counsel must break down every aspect of the sex crime case to present an effective defense in negotiations or at trial.

PRIVATE VS. PUBLIC DEFENDERS IN PHOENIX

Although public defenders may be great lawyers, they often have too many cases and not enough time. Some public defenders may not have adequate experience to handle sex crime cases successfully. A private defense attorney takes on a limited number of clients and can spend more time and resources on each case.

If you face sexual offense charges or suspect you are under investigation, your priority should be to retain legal representation. The sooner you begin building defense strategies in Phoenix sex crime cases, the more options you may have for minimizing the impact on your life.

At Grand Canyon Law Group, our legal team includes former prosecutors in the Maricopa County attorney’s sex crimes unit. Our skilled local attorneys underwent the same training as sex crime prosecutors and police, and as defense lawyers, we have tried countless cases involving sexual offenses. When building a defense strategy against sex crime charges, working with the right attorney is crucial.

SEX OFFENDER REGISTRATION IN PHOENIX

The sex offender registry in Arizona is an online, public database of people ordered to register by a court. Certain offenses mandate registration, while others allow the court to decide whether the convicted person must register as a sex offender.

Sex offender registration in Phoenix can impact your life in many ways, from limiting your housing options to affecting your employment opportunities.

INFORMATION IN THE SEX OFFENDER REGISTRY

The sex offender database tracks an offender’s name, birthdate, address, and other identifying information. There are three levels of registration—community members are notified for levels two and three.

If a sex offender moves into a neighborhood, flyers are mailed to every house, notifying the neighbors who the person is, where they live, what they look like, and what their offense was. Level one registration does not require the same flyer notifications, but anyone can look up the registered offenders in their neighborhood.

LEVELS IN THE SEX OFFENDER REGISTRY

The Department of Public Safety determines a sex offender’s registration level through various factors. The department will consider the person’s history, age, circumstances, and other personal factors to determine their risk of reoffending. They will also review information like probation interviews and testimony from treatment providers.

SEX OFFENSES THAT REQUIRE REGISTRATION IN PHOENIX

As the attorneys at our firm can explain, multiple sex offenses require registration upon conviction. These include:

  • Sexual assault
  • Sexual conduct with a minor
  • Molestation of a child
  • Sex trafficking
  • Kidnapping a child under the age of 15
  • Possession of child pornography
  • Luring a minor for sexual exploitation

Some convictions allow courts discretion on whether the person must register as a sex offender. These include indecent exposure, public sexual indecency, or other sexually motivated crimes. Our experienced Phoenix attorneys can argue against sex offender registration in these cases to protect a person’s future. When a person faces charges requiring mandatory registration, avoiding a conviction is crucial to protecting their way of life.

CAN I GET REMOVED FROM THE SEX OFFENDER REGISTRY?

If a person was convicted as an adult in Arizona, they are likely unable to get removed from the sex offender registry. However, a person convicted as a minor may be able to have their name removed after serving probation. This is not possible if the defendant was sentenced to prison time as part of the sex crime conviction. Our knowledgeable Phoenix attorneys can explain a person’s options for mitigating the impact of juvenile sex offender registration during a confidential consultation.

DISCUSS SEX OFFENDER REGISTRATION WITH OUR LAWYERS IN PHOENIX

Being on the sex offender registry will impact where you can live, as most housing and apartment applications require background checks. If you have a felony conviction or are on the registry, it may be difficult to find rental housing. Even after finding a place to live, your neighbors will know about their sex offender status, affecting their reputation in the community.

The sooner you contact legal counsel in your criminal case, the sooner they can begin fighting to protect your rights and prevent severe consequences. Grand Canyon Law Group can explain the impact of sex offender registration in Phoenix and work to prevent a conviction that requires it. Call our firm today to get the representation you need.

WHEN SHOULD I HIRE A SEX CRIME ATTORNEY?

Hiring an attorney as early as possible in a sex crime case is critical. If a person knows that they are under investigation for a sex crime in Phoenix, our lawyers can intervene and potentially prevent or limit the prosecution from gathering evidence against them.

In the early stages of a sex offense case, an attorney’s job is to counsel the client on protecting their best interests. This could include advising them to avoid phone calls with supposed witnesses or victims and representing them in interviews with the police. The earlier a person contacts legal counsel in a Phoenix sex crime case, the sooner the attorney can begin working to protect them.

BENEFITS OF LEGAL COUNSEL IN SEX OFFENSE CASES

The importance of legal counsel in a sex crime case cannot be overstated. For one, a lawyer will know what to look for, how to break down the state’s case, and potentially limit their use of evidence. The Phoenix attorneys at Grand Canyon Law Group are former prosecutors who know how the prosecution operates in sex crime cases. We can use that knowledge to benefit those accused of these offenses.

Another aspect of an attorney’s job in sex crimes cases is to evaluate the potential penalties. The sentencing scheme in Arizona for sex crimes is complicated, so it is important to work with legal counsel that understands the consequences of a conviction and can work to prevent them.

Finally, a seasoned Phoenix lawyer knows the experts to call on in a sex crimes case, including DNA or medical experts, psychologists, psychiatrists, or other professionals. These cases are unique and require specialized training to understand how these investigations work, what type of evidence to look for, and how to build an effective defense. A lawyer’s job is to assess the sexual offense allegations and determine which types of experts can contribute to a strong defense.

TRUST IN A CLIENT-ATTORNEY RELATIONSHIP

In any case, the client must trust their lawyer and know that they are working in the client’s best interest. Without that trust, the client may close themselves off or hide information from the attorney, preventing them from fully evaluating the situation. The client and attorney need to trust each other and communicate honestly. This is especially true of sex crime cases in Phoenix, as our lawyers can attest.

When facing severe allegations like sex crimes, you need a knowledgeable lawyer who understands the law, procedures, and processes. You also need someone who is empathetic and will listen to your goals for your case.

At Grand Canyon Law Group, we know how important the role of an attorney is in Phoenix sex crimes cases.

WHAT HAPPENS AFTER A SEX CRIME ALLEGATION?

To arrest someone, the police must have probable cause that the suspect committed an offense. After an arrest for a sex offense, police will typically book the suspect into a jail facility where they will be held for up to 24 hours until they can see a judge. The judge will review the officer’s description of the evidence and decide whether there is probable cause to hold the person.

If the judge decides there is probable cause, they will impose release conditions. This could involve setting a bond, releasing the person on their own recognizance, or releasing them under the supervision of pretrial services. In other cases, the person is held in custody without an option for bail.

After that, the case will move through the court system. The prosecutor will file formal charges, starting a series of pretrial hearings that may result in a plea agreement or some other legal resolution to the case. If not, the case may go to trial. Those accused of sex crimes should contact a Phoenix attorney as early as possible in the pretrial process for representation.

WHAT TO DO AFTER BEING CHARGED WITH A SEX CRIME

Hiring an experienced lawyer should be a priority for anyone accused of a sex crime. Many attorneys say they handle sex crime cases but have limited training and experience. Defendants in these cases need to consult legal counsel with a track record of success, like Grand Canyon Law Group.

It is also important to avoid talking to the police without legal representation. A seasoned Phoenix sex crimes attorney can explain what to expect from the police interrogation and help defendants avoid incriminating statements. Anything a person says may be used against them in the case, so limiting communication is often the best way to prevent the prosecution from gathering evidence.

ENHANCED PENALTIES FOR SEX CRIME CONVICTIONS

Perhaps the most important component of sex crime accusations, making them particularly severe offenses in Arizona, is the degree to which state law allows much longer prison sentences for sex related offenses over others. For example, under ARS §13-702, a first-time offender convicted of a class 2 felony may face a presumptive prison sentence of four to ten years without any aggravating or mitigating circumstances.

However, a first-time conviction for sexual assault without any aggravating circumstances carries a presumptive sentence of seven years in prison within a minimum of 5.25 years and a maximum of 14. Even harsher penalties apply in situations involving alleged sexual indecency, exploitation, or abuse of minors under 15 years of age.

Additionally, most individuals convicted of sex crimes must register as sex offenders for life, with the potential for additional criminal charges and penalties if they fail to do so. A knowledgeable sex crimes lawyer in Phoenix could provide further clarification about potential sanctions and defense strategies that may apply to a specific case.

 

CONTACT A PHOENIX SEX CRIMES ATTORNEY TO DISCUSS YOUR CASE

Even if you have a clean record and no history of other criminal accusations, a single sex crime conviction could permanently and irreversibly change your life. Contesting allegations like this effectively can require a comprehensive defense strategy built around multiple sources of evidence. Collecting and compiling this evidence efficiently can be next to impossible without professional legal guidance, so it is crucial to work with an attorney with ample experience handling these cases.

Just because you were charged with a crime involving a sexual offense does not mean you will be found guilty. These are difficult cases for the prosecution to prove; having the right lawyer to attack the state’s case is crucial.

At Grand Canyon Law Group, our team of former prosecutors turned defense attorneys knows exactly what to expect in the courtroom and can use our experience to help you build a strong defense. To learn more, schedule a free consultation with a dedicated member of our team today.

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