Facing molestation charges can come as a devastating blow. The penal consequences if convicted, not to mention the social consequences, can leave a lasting impact on your life. However, just because you are charged with a crime does not mean that you lose your rights, and you have the right to retain a defense attorney in court. If you have been accused of this crime we urge you to contact a molestation defense lawyer in Palos Verdes at Okabe and Haushalter. We have offices located throughout the greater Los Angeles area, and we can help you fight your criminal charges in the court of law.
Under California Penal Code Section 647.6, it is unlawful to “molest or annoy” a person under the age of 18 years. This law also states that penalties may include a jail sentence of up to one year and a fine of up to 5,000 dollars. Sentencing may be more severe if the accused has previously been convicted of the same crime or a similar crime.
In many cases, a person accused of molestation may also be charged with other criminal offenses under different portions of the state law. For example, California Penal Code Section 288 outlines lewd and lascivious acts with a minor, and Section 261.5 defines the crime of statutory rape and its penalties. It is possible to face multiple charges related to the same alleged crime. In these cases, your defense attorney may opt to negotiate a plea agreement so that the most serious charges are dropped, which can help reduce the probability of facing harsher penalties upon conviction.
Under California Penal Code Section 290, anyone convicted of child molestation will face compulsory sex offender registration, meaning that their personal data will be made available to local schools, law enforcement agencies, and even the general public. Although registration in these cases is for life, there are certain circumstances in which a registrant may request that their status on the registry be changed to “undisclosed.” Persons who have “undisclosed” status on the registry would still have their personal information made available to local law enforcement, schools, and employers, but access to those personal details (such as name, date of birth, residential address, etc.) would be restricted for the general public. Contact an attorney to learn more about requesting “undisclosed” status.
If you are facing charges of molestation and want to fight them in court, contact a molestation defense lawyer in Palos Verdes at Okabe and Haushalter. Our criminal defense experts can help you steer your way through the legal system and will help you fight the charges you face in court. We customize our defense strategies based on the unique circumstances surrounding your case, and can aggressively defend you in the courtroom or negotiate for plea agreements to reduce stacked charges to a single charge if appropriate. Don’t let being charged with a crime ruin your life—call today for a free case evaluation.