Sex Crimes Lawyers in Miami, FL
If you’re facing sex offense charges, it’s important to understand the severity of your situation as rape and sex offenses are serious charges in Florida. Convicted sex offender status carries serious consequences long into the future affecting your community, career, relationships, and reputation. It can impact your opportunities for future jobs, loans, education, and home buying. Partnering with an experienced legal team will give you your best shot at a bright future.
In Miami and South Florida, sex offenses are defined as unwanted sexual contact, illicit sexual intercourse, or prohibited behavior with the intention of obtaining sexual gratification without force or threat of force, where the victim is not capable of giving consent. These crimes come with varying punishments. If you or a loved one are facing sex offenses or sexual assault charges, please get in touch with criminal defense lawyers right away.
Sex Offense Charges in Florida
A number of factors determine the severity of sex offense charges filed by Florida courts. When deciding on which, if any, sex crime to charge you with, officials will take into account the acts that occurred, the age of the victim, and whether or not penetration occurred, among other factors.
The main factor that sex offenses hinge on is whether consent was freely and willfully given. In Florida, if a victim made it clear via verbal or non-verbal communication that they were not giving consent to a sex act, a person could be charged with a sexual offense.
If the act was committed to a minor, the suspect in question will be immediately charged with a sex crime because minors cannot legally give consent.
Types of Sex Crimes
Sexual battery is committed when the accused had vaginal, anal, or oral contact with the victim without their consent. Sexual battery is also an automatic charge in Statutory Rape cases in the following situations:
- The accused solicited the child for sexual acts
- The victim was younger than age 18
- The perpetrator knows or has custody of the child
Aggravated Sexual Battery
An aggravated sexual battery offense is usually charged when an act of sexual violence is committed by using a deadly weapon to force or intimidate the victim into sexual activity. Additionally, these charges can be filed if the victim is drugged or is physically or mentally unable to resist or consent to sexual acts. If the accused was in a position of power over the victim, the charge also applies.
In any situation where sexual activity occurs with a minor aged 12 years old or younger. If one partner is under the age of 18, the age gap between the two cannot be greater than four years. Sexually battery is automatically charged in statutory rape cases as minors cannot legally consent.
Lewd and Lascivious Acts
In Florida, lewd and lascivious acts are considered the following sexual activities:
- Vulgar or indecent exposure of genitalia to a minor, elder, or disabled individual
- Encouraging, enticing, or forcing sexual acts
- Exhibition over digital devices i.e., phones or computers: exposing genitals, masturbating, or engaging in sexual conduct without physical touching
- Lewd and lascivious battery: the accused engages in sexual acts or entices into sexual contact with a victim between the ages of 12 and 16
- Lewd and lascivious molestation: the offender intentionally touches the victim’s body parts or forces them to touch the offender, and the victim is under 16
- Lewd and lascivious conduct: the offender touches the victim in a sexual manner or makes the victim touch them sexually, and the victim is under 16
Prostitution and Solicitation
Prostitution consists of engaging in a sexual act in exchange for payment. Solicitation is the offering of one’s own or someone else’s prostitution services. The charges can become more severe if the person is underage.
A child pornography charge can be filed if possession of any type of child pornography is possessed.
Penalties for sexual offenses in Miami, FL
Florida has some of the strictest punishments for sex crimes in the country. The penalties include:
- Sexual battery: second degree felony at least 94.5 months in prison and up to 15 years, up to 15 years of probation, and up to $10,000 in fines
- Sexual battery on a child under 12: life felony and a life sentence in prison with no possibility of parole
- Sexual Battery with the use of a deadly weapon: life felony, and 126 months in prison with up to a full life sentence
- Aggravated sexual battery: first degree felony and 94.5 months to 30 years in prison, potential 30 years of probation, and up to $10,000 in fines
- Aggravated sexual battery on a person between 12 and 18 years old: life felony, a minimum of 108 months in prison and up to a life sentence
- Lewd or lascivious battery: prison sentence ranging from 7 to 15 years
- Statutory rape: penalty of between 5 and 17 years in prison
If Convicted of a Sex Crime in Florida
If you’re convicted of a sexual offense in the state of Florida, you could be facing fines and a prison sentence of up to life in prison depending on the crime.
You may also be given the status of sexual offender or sexual predator and be added to the State of Florida database in addition to your court sentencing. The status itself is separate from the sentencing and depends on the severity of the crime. The status comes with strict guidelines that you must follow to avoid more penalties.
Who Will Be Considered a Sexual Offender?
The qualifications for sexual offender status in the state of Florida include the following crimes: lewd and lascivious acts with a minor, sexual performance with a minor, child pornography, or child prostitution.
Who Will Be Considered a Sexual Predator?
Sexual predator status in Florida is a very serious status. Sexual predators are repeat sexual offenders who have been convicted of a first-degree felony related to a sexual offense or two second degree felonies. This status is given to represent individuals who are a major threat to society.
Contact an Experienced Sex Offense Attorney
When facing sexual offense charges, you need to understand the severity and get the help of a quality legal team who can defend you. Smith & Eulo has been working on sex offense cases for decades and has seen cases of all kinds in Miami, FL. We help mount a strong defense to minimize any potential damages or penalties to you.
If you or your loved one find themselves in a situation where you are being accused of a sex crime? Call us right away at 786-206-1296 to speak with a qualified legal professional or fill out the contact form on this page. We’re available 24/7, we offer free initial consultation and payment plans. In addition to our Miami office, we have offices in the following cities across the state of Florida:
*Additional Orlando Florida & Orange County Legal Resources