Though most people are familiar with the term “child molestation,” very few actually understand the complex laws California has enacted to deal with the matter. Fortunately, Vista child molestation defense lawyer Peter M. Liss is here to help you better understand the law.
What crime are accused child molesters charged with?
If someone is accused of inappropriately touching a minor, they will formally charged with committing a lewd act against a child under 14.
If I thought the victim was 18, can I use that in my defense?
No. Unlike statutory rape charges, it does not matter how old you believed the victim to be. It only matters how old he or she actually is.
The minor was the one that initiated the activity, so I can’t be charged -right?
Wrong. It doesn’t matter if the minor consented or even initiated an activity, if you were involved with an act intended to cause sexual stimulation or pleasure, you can be charged with child molestation. Vista defense attorneys understand this, which is why you should always speak to your legal representative before talking to the police.
I never touched the child’s bare skin or their genitals, so how can I be accused of child molestation?
It doesn’t actually matter what part of the child’s body you touched or what clothes he or she was wearing, if you touched a child with the intent of causing sexual arousal or gratification to you or the child, it is considered child molestation. In fact, even if you only had the minor touch themselves or only touch you, but you never even touched them, you can still be charged with this crime.
The alleged victim or his/her parents called me. Should I talk to them?
No. One common way police obtain confessions for these crimes is to have the child or their parent call the suspect while police record the call. The child or parent will often use charged statements to get the suspect to admit guilt, for example, by saying the child is now having nightmares or being teased about what happened by their classmates. Even saying, “I’m sorry” during these conversations can often be used as a confession of guilt.
If you have been accused of a sex crime, do not answer the phone for anyone you do not know. Screen your calls with voicemail and if you do accidentally answer a phone call from someone involved with the case, do not discuss the accusations and say that you are going to call your Vista child molestation attorney. Once you hang up, follow through and call your lawyer to tell them what happened.
If you are accused of this serious offense, Vista child molestation defense lawyer Peter M. Liss can help you. Please call (760) 643-4050 or (858) 486-3024 to schedule a consultation as soon as possible.