Georgia Sex Crimes Lawyer
The laws regarding what qualifies as a sex crime vary from state to state. Georgia’s sex crime laws, for instance, are particularly vast and tend to be confusing, with some offenses seeming overly broad and others even appearing to overlap. For this reason, those who are being investigated, or who have already been arrested for, engaging in a sex crime are typically encouraged to speak with an experienced Georgia sex crimes lawyer who can help them navigate this difficult area of the law.
Types of Sex Crimes in Georgia
There are a number of different types of sex crimes in Georgia, some of which are considered misdemeanors, while others qualify as felonies and require lifetime registration as a sex offender. Some of the most commonly charged sex offenses in Georgia, include:
- Sexual battery;
- Sexual assault;
- Statutory rape;
- Child molestation;
- Public indecency;
- Failing to register as a sex offender; and
- Harboring, withholding, or concealing information about a sex offender.
The specific penalties that come with a conviction for these offenses vary depending on the specific facts of the case, including the ages of the alleged perpetrator and victim, the severity and type of crime in question, and the defendant’s prior criminal record.
Statute of Limitations
Under Georgia law, a person can only be convicted of these kinds of offenses when a charge is filed within a specific time limit known as a statute of limitations. For most sex offenses, this deadline is seven years from the date that the crime was allegedly committed. Sexual assault of someone under the age of 18 years old, child molestation, statutory rape, and aggravated sexual battery, for instance, all have a seven year statute of limitations. There are many other sex crimes, however, where prosecution must be commenced within four years of the date of the offense. These include sexual assault and sex trafficking. Finally, some sex offenses require that prosecution be initiated within two years of the alleged criminal act, including statutory rape when the victim is between the ages of 14 and 16 years old and the accused is younger than 18 years old.
It’s important to note that there are a few important exceptions to these time limits. There is, for instance, no statute of limitations in rape, aggravated sexual battery, and child molestation cases where DNA evidence is used to establish the identity of the accused.
Penalties for Georgia Sex Crimes
Sex crimes are punished severely in Georgia. Those who are convicted of a felony sexual offense, for example, are required to register as sex offenders, which can make it difficult to obtain housing or secure employment. Besides registry, convicted sex offenders can expect to face lengthy prison terms and large fines, making it especially important for those who have been accused of these kinds of crimes in Georgia, to speak with an attorney about building a strong defense.
Contact an Experienced Georgia Sex Crimes Lawyer
To set up a meeting with an experienced Georgia sex crimes lawyer who understands the kinds of charges and penalties you are facing, please call Hawkins Spizman at (770) 209-2310 today.