Sex offenses are some of the most serious charges anyone can face in Texas. Not only does a conviction for a sex crime often result in a lengthy prison sentence, but it can carry other life-changing consequences. For example, if you are convicted of a sex crime you will almost certainly be required to register as a sex offender, possibly for the rest of your life. You will also be limited in where you can live and work.
Not all sex offenses are created equal, however, and some crimes that are considered sex offenses (and require sex offender registration) may come as a surprise. The following are a few of the most common Texas sex crimes:
- Possession or distribution of child pornography;
- Public lewdness;
- Indecent exposure;
- Maintaining an improper teacher/student relationship;
- Sexual assault (rape);
- Prostitution; and
Notably, most sex offenses do not require someone to actually perform a sex act; it is a crime to engage in an act in furtherance of the commission of a sex crime. For example, leaving the house to meet up with a minor you met in an online chatroom for the purposes of engaging in any type of sexual relationship can result in criminal prosecution. In most cases, the crime is punishable to the same extent as if you carried out the sex act.
Defenses to Texas Sex Crimes
While sex offenses are extremely serious, they also proceed with very little evidence. Absent physical or video evidence, these charges are frequently based on a single party’s allegations. While, under the law, this is enough to support a conviction, it also opens the door to many defenses.
Perhaps the most common defense against a sex crime is arguing that the government failed to prove its case. Before a judge or jury can convict you of any criminal offense, the government must prove that you committed the crime beyond a reasonable doubt. In cases with very little evidence, your attorney can argue that the prosecution’s case fell short. This is often done by challenging the alleged victim’s story, either by showing that they had some bias against you or pointing out inconsistencies in their testimony. The reality is that many sex crime allegations are brought to punish the defendant for some other “wrong” they committed, for example, by being unfaithful.
One notable claim that is not a defense to a Texas sex crime involving a minor is your mistaken belief about the minor’s age. If a minor is underage, you cannot defend against the case by claiming you thought they were an adult, even if they misrepresented their age.
Have You Been Arrested for a Texas Sex Offense?
If you face charges related to a sex offense, contact the dedicated Texas criminal defense lawyers at Guest & Gray for immediate assistance. At Guest & Gray, we aggressively defend our clients against all types of allegations, including sex crimes. We have extensive experience standing up for our clients’ rights at every stage of the process, and will not hesitate to take your case to the jury to clear your name. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation, give us a call at 972-564-4644 today, you can also reach us through our online form.