Facing criminal allegations is never easy, and being charged with a crime like molestation can have severely negative effects on your livelihood and reputation. However, just because you have been charged with a crime does not mean you have to forfeit your rights, and you have the right to retain legal counsel to defend you in court. If you have been accused of molestation or a related criminal offense, contact a molestation defense lawyer in Rolling Hills at Okabe and Haushalter to learn more about your rights as a defendant and your options under the law.
Under California Penal Code Section 647.6 it is illegal to molest or annoy a minor under the age of 18 for the purposes of achieving sexual gratification. People convicted of this crime face possible penalties of fines of up to 5,000 dollars and up to one year of incarceration in a county jail. However, repeat offenders face harsher penalties including higher fines and several years of incarceration in a state penal facility.
Molestation charges may be accompanied by related “stacked” criminal charges of a similar nature. For example, someone could also be charged with lewd and lascivious acts with a minor under California Penal Code Section 288 if the alleged victim was a minor aged 15 or under when the alleged acts took place. This charge could yield a penalty of up to eight years in state prison if convicted, or up to ten years if the use of threat or force was a factor.
Anyone who is convicted of molestation or a similar charge faces mandatory lifelong sex offender registration. Registration involves making your personal information and the details of the charges you were convicted of available to the general public. Although it is not possible to petition for removal from the registry, a registrant may request changing their status in the database to “undisclosed.” When a registrant petitions for undisclosed status, they would still have their personal information made available to law enforcement agencies and local schools and employers, but the general public would not be at liberty to view the information as with standard registration status. Contact an attorney to learn more about petitioning for undisclosed status.
If you need a molestation defense lawyer in Rolling Hills, contact the attorneys at Okabe and Haushalter. We are experienced legal professionals with extensive knowledge of criminal law. We can take on your case and represent you and your best interests in the courtroom. We can help reduce stacked charges to a single charge via a plea bargain, and we may even be able to get charges thrown out entirely depending on the circumstances surrounding the alleged crime(s) you stand accused of. We offer free consultations to all potential clients, so call today to find out how we can put our legal know-how to work for you.