San Diego SEX CRIME Defense LAWYER
I am sex crimes attorney Peter M. Liss, and I can help you. I offer experienced and compassionate legal defense services for all variety of criminal offenses and I have personally defended many individuals who have been arrested and charged with a sex offense in San Diego County, including:
I can also help you if you are facing a potential “third strike” under the three strikes law. If you need a sex crime lawyer in Vista or the rest of San Diego County -please call me today for a free consultation and case evaluation. You will receive top quality representation for a reasonable fee.
Sex Offense Charges in San Diego County
I have represented people accused of all types of sex offenses, including rape, statutory rape, possession of child pornography or other obscene material, lewd act with a child under age 14, molestation of a child over age 14, indecent exposure, lewd acts in public, solicitation of prostitution, pimping and pandering, prostitution, sexual battery, sex offender registry violations and more. I have even represented people who have been accused of being a sexually violent predator who must be confined after his or her sentence is served.
Penalties for California Sex Crimes
Penalties for these offenses can include jail or prison time, fines, being subject to mandatory sex offender registration under California’s Megan’s Law, being involuntarily confined after a sentence is served (for violent crimes) and, in the cases involving sex acts with a child, you may even lose the right to see your children or be in the presence of children.
Sex Crimes and the Three Strikes Law
Additionally, many sex offenses are strikes under California’s three strikes law (California penal code section 667). This means if you have one previous strike on your record, your sentence will automatically be doubled and you will need to serve out at least 80% of your sentence before you become eligible for parole.
If you have two previous strikes on your record, and are accused of a violent or serious felony (including rape), you will face 25 years to life in a state prison. Fortunately, a skilled San Diego criminal attorney can often convince the judge to “strike a prior strike,” meaning they will ignore a previous strike for the purposes of sentencing.
Fighting Sex Crime Accusations
These are serious offenses with complex defenses. It is important to always work with a top sex offender lawyer in San Diego who has experience fighting crimes similar to the one you have been accused of. With over 35 years experience, I have personally represented people accused of just about every type of sex crime in California and am skilled at helping clients obtain the best results under the particular facts and law of your case.
Defenses to Sex Offenses
When it comes to fighting sex crimes, it is important that the defense is perfectly tailored to your specific circumstances. Common defenses against sex crimes include:
The Encounter Was Consensual
The most common defense against rape charges is that the alleged victim actually consented to the sexual intercourse. By arguing the victim consented, you are agreeing that the sex did occur, so forensic evidence showing you were involved in a sexual encounter with the victim no longer matters unless it shows force was used, though even then, it’s possible to argue that you engaged in consensual rough sex. It is important to recognize that this is not a defense against sex crimes where the victim is not considered to be able to consent, such those where the victim is under 18, too drunk to consent, unconscious or mentally incompetent. This is why it’s so important to speak to your sex offender attorney before speaking with police so you do not say something that will hurt your criminal defense.
The Prosecution has Insufficient Evidence
Many cases come down to the word of the victim versus the word of the defendant and this is rarely enough evidence to convict the accused party. This is why police will often attempt to coerce a suspect into confessing to a crime, which is again, why you should never speak to investigators or the victim without your defense attorney present.
No Sex Actually Occurred
If a victim claims he or she was raped, but you didn’t have sex with him or her, you need to be clear about this. This defense can be particularly successful if the victim was raped while unconscious -just because he or she remembered being with you before falling unconscious or because someone saw you with the victim does not mean you were the one who had sex with him or her. Again, this is not a defense in all cases as some sex crimes, such as child molestation, are still illegal even if no sex occurred. Additionally, oral copulation, anal penetration and even penetration with a foreign object are still considered forms of sexual assault when they are performed without consent, so be cautious with this defense.
The Accuser has an Ulterior Motive
If you claim that no sex occurred or that the sex was consensual, but the victim claims you violated him or her, your attorney might recommend questioning the alleged victim’s motivation for making the accusation. Could the alleged victim benefit financially from the accusations? Were you in an emotional breakup with the alleged victim? Is it possible the alleged victim is trying to protect his or her reputation by claiming rape rather than admitting to consensual sex? Any of these motives could bring the accuser’s testimony into question. Never attempt this defense without first speaking to your sex offender attorney as accusing someone of having ulterior motives can backfire in some cases, making you look more guilty.
The Evidence has Been Tainted
This concept largely applies to cases involving child rape and molestation. Essentially, taint occurs when a child is subjected to leading and suggestive interviews by parents, teachers, police officers or therapists. Children often want to please adults and will answer affirmatively to questions even when the answer is “no.” Additionally, while anyone’s memory can be subjected to the implantation of false memories, children are particularly sensitive to this problem. Between their desire to please and their subjectivity to the implantation of false memories, it’s easy for a question like “Did your teacher touch you there?” to not only result in a “yes” answer when the opposite is true, but it can actually create a memory in the child’s mind that isn’t real. Unfortunately, many people asking children such questions aren’t aware of this problem, so they can plant deep, dark memories in the child’s mind that would not otherwise be there and can even leave innocent people behind bars.
You’re the Victim of Mistaken Identity
Going along with the idea that no sex occurred is the concept of mistaken identities. Just because someone claims you were the one that raped them or that they saw you raping someone else does not mean you were had anything to do with the incident. Eyewitness testimony is not reliable and people are subject to mistaken identity problems all the time.
Investigators Improperly Collected Evidence
Evidence collected from the victim of a rape and the scene of the crime must be taken in a very specific manner and must be moved from one location to another using a strict chain of command. If the evidence is improperly collected or goes unaccounted for at any point while it is being moved, it becomes tainted and cannot be used in court. Even if tainted evidence shows you had sex with the victim, this information cannot be used against you.
You’re Guilty of a Lesser Offense
In many cases, it can be argued you committed an offense not as serious as the one accused of to avoid serious penalties of the charged crime. This is a common tactic used in negotiating plea bargains.
Do Not Attempt These Defenses Without a Lawyer
It’s important to recognize that there are many ways you can actually hurt your case by improperly attempting to use one of these defenses, which is why you should never speak with police or the victim without your lawyer present. For example, if you claim the victim consented, you cannot later say that there is a problem of mistaken identity. Similarly, if you try to say no sex occurred, but forensic evidence shows otherwise, the police and prosecutors will argue that the fact that you lied once means your word cannot be trusted.
Why Hire Me as Your San Diego Sex Crimes Lawyer
When you hire someone to represent you in a serious criminal case like those involving sex offenses, you need someone who will work tirelessly to get the best possible results for you based on the law and the facts of your case. If you have been accused of a sex crime, I can help you fight the charges by:
- 1 Providing you with actionable and useful advice and updating you on your case status
- 2 Helping you avoid an embarrassing arrest at your workplace or home
- 3 Arguing for reduced bail or no bail
- 4 Interviewing any witnesses and the police involved with the case
- 5 Collecting evidence to build a winning defense strategy. This may include:
- a. Obtaining a psychological evaluation to prove you do not fit the profile of a sex offender
- b. Proof that the victim has a reason to lie or a history of lying
- c. Evidence that the victim has a mental condition that may cause them to fantasize or create false memories that could result in their providing a false or inaccurate testimony
- d. Testimony from medical professionals that contradicts evidence and opinions provided by the prosecution’s medical experts
- e. Other evidence that may prove your innocence or show you are guilty of a lesser crime
- 6 Making court motions on your behalf
- 7 Determining the best possible legal defenses for your case
- 8 Working to convince the prosecutor not to file charges or seeking a reduction of the charges whenever possible. Sometimes convictions for lower-level sex crime charges are particularly beneficial as they may not require you register as a sex offender.
- 9 Presenting the strongest possible defense on your behalf
- 10 Attempting to secure minimal or alternative sentencing. Alternative sentences can include things like GPS monitoring, residential treatment, counseling or hormone treatments that may suppress your sex drive. In some cases, you may even be excused from registering as a sex offender.
A Criminal Defense Lawyer You Can Rely On
I am a California sex offender defense attorney with a degree from the top-rated University of California, Berkeley Law School and I have over 35 years experience. Over this time I have built a strong track record of success, personally fighting over 100 cases in trial and dozens of cases involving serious sex crimes. When you hire me, I will personally handle your entire case from start to finish. I guarantee all clients will receive top-quality representation at reasonable rates and accept all major credit cards.
Convenient Locations and Reliable Service
I offer free consultations at my law firm office located directly across the street from the Vista courthouse and jail. My 24 hour answering service means you will always be able to talk to a live person. I consider all matters related to sex crimes urgent and I guarantee prompt, courteous responses.
If you or someone in your family has been arrested on one of these charges, please call me to discuss the right sex crime defense for your case.
How to Contact Attorney Peter Liss
For skilled IMMEDIATE help with a Vista or
San Diego sex offense defense,
call Sex Crimes Lawyer
Peter M. Liss:
Call 24/7 – any time, any day. I can help you.
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