Mesa Sex Crimes Attorney

At AZ Defenders, we know how stressful it is to be accused of a sex crime. A sex crime conviction in Arizona can have severe ramifications and life-changing consequences. If you or a loved one has been accused of a sex crime, contact a qualified Mesa sex crimes attorney at our law firm right away. We can defend your rights and fight hard for justice on your behalf. Call (480) 456-6400 today for a free and confidential consultation.

Mesa Sex Crimes Lawyer

Why Choose Our Mesa Sex Crimes Attorney?

  • We are aggressive and reputable criminal defense attorneys.
  • We personalize defense strategies for each case and client.
  • We are highly experienced negotiators and litigators in Arizona.
  • We will work closely with you throughout your criminal case.
  • We are recognized as one of the most effective criminal defense law firms in Arizona.

Why Do You Require a Sex Crime Defense Lawyer?

Arizona has some of the harshest sentencing laws in the country when it comes to punishing sex crimes. You could be facing years in jail or prison if someone is accusing you of a sexual offense in Mesa. Hiring an experienced and knowledgeable attorney at AZ Defenders can enable you to protect your freedom, reputation and future. Our defense attorneys in Arizona can benefit you in a number of ways, including:

  • Investigating your case to better understand the facts and evidence against you.
  • Advising you during interrogations and interviews with police officers.
  • Protecting you from common mistakes, such as accidental self-incrimination.
  • Filing motions on your behalf, such as to have evidence ruled as inadmissible.
  • Negotiating with the prosecution to reach a satisfactory plea bargain if this is in your best interest.
  • Taking your case to trial and representing you in court, if necessary.
  • Aggressively defending you from sex crimes charges, both in and out of court.

It is critical to hire an attorney with years of experience defending clients if you have been accused of or arrested for an alleged sex crime. The right attorney can come up with a smart and aggressive defense strategy to protect you as much as possible from the penalties associated with your charge. The skilled attorneys at AZ Defenders have a proven track record of success with many significant victories won for our criminal defense clients in cases involving sex crimes.

What Constitutes a Sex Crime in Arizona?

Many different offenses fall under the classification of a sex crime in Arizona. In general, it is a sex crime to touch someone else’s private parts or genitals without the victim’s consent, if the victim cannot legally give consent, or while the victim is constrained for the purpose of sexual arousal, gratification or abuse. 

In Arizona, the age of consent is 18 years old. A child under the age of 18 cannot give his or her consent to sexual activity. If anyone over the age of 18 engages in sexual contact with someone under 18, it is statutory rape. Other sex crime charges can be enhanced to aggravated if the victim is under the age of 18 and can become a class 2 felony if the victim is under the age of 16.

Are There Different Kinds of Sex Crimes?

At AZ Defenders, we have the Mesa criminal defense lawyers and resources to accept all different types of sex crime cases. We understand Arizona’s related statutes and how to create a strong defense on behalf of a client according to the specific charges against him or her.

Crimes Against Children; Molestation: ARS 13-1410 and Pornography: ARS 13-3553

Arizona Revised Statute (ARS) 13-1410 defines child molestation as a crime against a child who is 14 years old or younger, such as intentionally engaging in sexual contact or forcing the child to engage in sexual contact. Arizona’s child pornography law (ARS 13-3553) defines this crime as knowingly photographing, filming or depicting a minor engaged in sexual conduct or distributing this type of material.

Indecent Exposure: ARS 13-1402 and Public Sexual Indecency: ARS 13-1403

Indecent exposure refers to exposing one’s genitals, anus or a female’s breast (except while breastfeeding) in a public place. Public sexual indecency can describe any sexual act, including sexual intercourse or sexual contact, committed recklessly while someone who would be alarmed or offended is present.

Sexual Abuse: ARS 13-1404

The definition of sexual abuse in Arizona is knowingly or intentionally committing a sexual act or behavior against someone without that person’s consent.

Sexual Assault: ARS 13-1406 and Violent Sexual Assault: ARS 13-1423

Sexual assault is the crime of engaging someone in a sexual act – primarily rape – without that person’s consent. Violent sexual assault is this crime with an aggravating factor, such as the use of a deadly weapon.

Sexual Misconduct: ARS 13-1418

Sexual misconduct describes sexual relations between two people who have a protected relationship, such as a therapist and his or her patient.

Prostitution and Solicitation for Prostitution: ARS 13-3211

Prostitution is the crime of agreeing to engage or engaging in sexual activity for a fee or another type of payment. Solicitation for prostitution is the crime of paying someone or offering to give someone something of value for sexual engagement.

Statutory Rape: ARS 13-1405

Even if someone consents to sexual intercourse, it could constitute the crime of statutory rape if one of the parties is under the age of 18.

What Are Common Penalties for Sex Crimes?

Arizona punishes sex crimes harshly, making the need to hire a skilled Mesa sex crimes attorney all the more important. If the criminal courts convict you of a sex crime, you could face expensive fines, jail or prison time, probation, community service, and other penalties. The exact sentence will depend on the nature of the alleged crime and its severity. If the victim suffered a serious bodily injury or you are convicted of an aggravated crime, for example, you will face more serious consequences.

Arizona has a mandatory sentencing law for sexual offenses. If convicted, state law requires a prison term of 5 to 14 years for rape and 13 to 27 years for sex crimes involving children. These sentences may be imputed with no chance for early release if a risk assessment concludes that you should not be released back into the community. However, your lawyer can argue that you are a good candidate for probation or a substantially reduced sentence. 

In addition to these penalties, you may be required to enter your name on Arizona’s Sex Offender Registry. This list is available to the public, meaning anyone can look it up and see your name on the list. Being on the list also comes with ongoing requirements, such as the need to notify the proper authorities when moving to a new address. As a registered sex offender, you also cannot live within 1,000 feet of schools or childcare facilities. 

How an Attorney Works to Build a Successful Defense

The strength of your defense is what will determine your future as the defendant of a sex crimes case. Your Mesa sex crimes attorney should personalize your legal defense based on the specific facts of your case, such as whether or not you have a criminal history. Examples of possible defenses include:

  • Consent – the victim consented to the alleged sexual contact or act.
  • Wrong defendant or mistaken identity – you have an alibi proving that you aren’t the sex offender.
  • Police misconduct the police infringed upon your constitutional rights, such as with an unlawful search or seizure.
  • Mistake of age – you had reason to believe the victim was the legal age of consent.
  • Involuntary intoxication – you were intoxicated without your knowledge or consent.
  • Lack of evidence – the prosecution does not have enough evidence to meet the burden of proof.

The defense that is right for your case depends on the circumstances. Your defense strategy may be to achieve a case acquittal, meaning all charges are dropped. It may also be to reduce the charges, such as negotiating a felony down to a misdemeanor. Your lawyer will build the strongest possible defense for you.Discuss your unique defense with our attorneys today.

What to Expect From the Criminal Court Process

It is normal to feel overwhelmed and uncertain about your future after being accused of a sex crime. Knowing what to expect from the legal process ahead can help you plan for the next steps with greater peace of mind. In general, here’s how the criminal process works in Arizona:

  • Initial appearance: you will be informed of the charges against you, advised of your next court date, given the conditions of your release or bond, and appointed a public defender if you cannot afford a private attorney.
  • Arraignment: you or your attorney will enter a plea of not guilty, guilty or no contest. Your lawyer will advise you on the best plea for your situation.
  • Indictment or preliminary hearing: a decision to dismiss the case or proceed based on the evidence available. If you receive an indictment on a felony offense, you will not have a preliminary hearing, as a Grand Jury has already found probable cause to charge you.
  • Plea agreement: a bargain that may be achieved prior to trial, where you accept responsibility for reduced charges in exchange for a better sentence than what you would face if the case went to trial.
  • Trial: a court proceeding where the prosecutor must prove that you committed the sex crime charged beyond a reasonable doubt. Your defense attorney will have the chance to cross-examine the prosecutor’s witnesses and present evidence to tell your story.
  • Sentencing: if a jury believes the prosecutor has met the burden of proof and finds you guilty of the sex crime, you will attend a separate hearing to hear your sentence.
  • Appeal: a request to a higher court to review your sex crimes case because your attorney believes errors were made during your trial.

Our aggressive sex crime defense lawyers will guide you through each step of your criminal case in Mesa with personalized legal counsel. We will put our years of experience navigating Maricopa County’s criminal justice system to work on your behalf and do what it takes to protect you as our client.

Can You Have a Sex Crime Removed From Your Record?

Unlike many other states, Arizona does not allow for record expungements. This means you cannot erase a criminal conviction. However, it does allow people to set aside their convictions, in some cases. This means a judge will set aside the judgment of guilt and release you from all penalties that resulted from the conviction. If your request for the set aside is granted, you can say that your case was dismissed.  

Arizona’s set-aside law does not apply to every type of criminal conviction. Convictions that require defendants to register as sex offenders, convictions involving victims under the age of 15 and convictions for crimes that are “sexually motivated” cannot be set aside. Find out if this is an option for your type of conviction by talking to an attorney.

Mesa Sex Crimes Lawyer

Consult With a Skilled Mesa Sex Crimes Lawyer Today

The Mesa and Phoenix sex crimes attorneys at AZ Defenders have years of experience representing defendants in these types of cases. We understand the importance of obtaining positive results for clients facing severe consequences. Contact us today to request a confidential case evaluation near you. Call our law firm at (480) 456-6400 24/7.