While any criminal conviction could have serious repercussions, even an accusation of a sex crime that does not end with a conviction could do substantial damage to your personal and professional reputation. If the charges against you produce a conviction, you may face penalties commensurate with a high-level felony and possibly have to register as a sex offender for decades following your offense.
Individuals accused of sex-based criminal offenses have the same rights to defend themselves in court as any other criminal defendant, and a Florence sex crimes lawyer could help you protect yours. These cases tend to be both procedurally complex and emotionally charged, so moving forward with guidance from a committed criminal defense attorney is the best thing you can do.
Degrees of Sex Offenses in Florence
With the exception of certain offenses like indecent exposure, voyeurism, and less severe degrees of sexual abuse, sex offenses in Kentucky are almost always classified as felonies punishable upon conviction by multiple years of imprisonment. Some of the felony-level charges that experienced Florence sex crime attorneys could assist with addressing include:
- Rape, as defined by Kentucky Revised Statutes § 510.040 through 060
- First-degree sexual abuse, as defined by R.S. § 510.110
- Electronic solicitation of a minor, as defined by R.S. § 510.155
- Using a minor in a sexual performance, as defined by R.S. § 531.310
- Possession or promotion of child pornography, as defined by R.S. § 531.335
- Distribution of child pornography, as defined by R.S. § 531.340
Some sex offenses are divided into different “degrees,” allowing for different levels of sanctions upon conviction based on the specific actions taken by the defendant. For example, rape in the second degree entails sexual intercourse with someone who is under the age of 14, or someone who is mentally incapacitated or intellectually disabled.
First-degree rape, on the other hand, entails sexual intercourse with someone who is physically helpless or under the age of 12, or which is achieved through “forcible compulsion.” Notably, sexual intercourse without the other party’s consent but without any other aggravating factors is considered “sexual misconduct” rather than rape and classified as a Class A misdemeanor under K.R.S. § 510.140.
Sex Offender Registration Requirements
All felony sex offenses and some misdemeanor sex offenses in Kentucky also require convicted persons to register as a sex offender. With only a few rare exceptions, convicted individuals must register for a minimum of 20 years after their conviction, and they are responsible for keeping contact information and photographs of themselves current in their listing.
According to K.R.S. § 17.520, anyone who is convicted of kidnapping or unlawfully imprisoning someone under 18 who is not their own child, or of committing first-degree rape, must register for life even if it is their first criminal offense. Lifetime registration requirements also apply to most individuals who are convicted of their second or subsequent sex offenses. A sex crimes lawyer in Florence could explain the requirements and limitations involved in this registration in more detail.
Talk to a Florence Sex Crimes Attorney About Legal Options
Law enforcement authorities take sex offenses extremely seriously, and you could face substantial repercussions for a conviction regardless of your past criminal history. To give yourself a chance at a favorable case resolution, you may need assistance from a legal representative who knows how to handle these unique situations.
A Florence sex crimes lawyer could stand by your side throughout the proceedings against you, working tenaciously to preserve your best interests. Call today for a private consultation.