Juvenile Sex Crimes
The penalties for sex crimes committed by minors may not differ much from those committed by adults in Florida. The state harshly handles sex crime allegations, and if your child has allegedly committed such an offense, it is crucial to seek the aid of a criminal defense lawyer right away. This may be your only chance to defend your child and keep him from enduring a lifetime of consequences for the offense.
West Palm Beach Juvenile Sex Crime Attorney
At The Law Office of Gabriel & Gabriel, we staunchly represent minors charged with sexual offenses in West Palm Beach. Attorney Brian Gabriel has dedicated over 30 years to criminal defense in South Florida and can provide a solid defense for any juvenile facing the juvenile or adult criminal justice system.
Before making any statements to law enforcement or other governmental entity concerning your child’s alleged offense, contact an attorney to provide strong representation. Whether your child has been accused of sexting, sexual abuse or battery, lewd acts, or sexual misconduct, Florida judges hand down harsh penalties for juvenile sex offenders.
Even though they are underage and may not fully understand the consequences of their actions, juveniles in Florida may be placed on the sex offender registry. In some instances, they may even have their photos and personal information displayed alongside those of adults on the sex offender registry website, which the public may access at any time. To protect your child’s privacy and reputation, it is imperative that he or she work with an attorney before speaking to anyone of authority about the incident that led to these charges.
One of the most common juvenile sex crimes involves the transmission of sexually explicit images. “Sexting” is when people share nude or sexually explicit images via cell phones, computers, or other communication devices. While consenting adults who send each other such images are not committing crime, juveniles who send images of themselves to other minors can be charged with sexting.
This offense is tied to child pornography, even though in many cases the juvenile who is charged with the crime willingly sent the photographs. When this occurs, the juvenile is considered both the defendant and the victim. Sexting can lead to felony charges for minors because it is categorized under child pornography. Without a strong attorney, a sexting conviction can require your child to register as a sex offender.
Lewd Acts and Lascivious Behavior
Lewd and lascivious behavior pertains to indecent sexual behavior on or around minors 16 or younger. Associated crimes include lewd and lascivious conduct, exhibition, and molestation.
Lewd and Lascivious Conduct
Lewd and lascivious conduct can be charged for many different actions that are sexual in nature. If one intentionally touches a person under 16 or solicits a minor under 16 to commit lewd and lascivious acts, they can be charged with a felony offense. If the defendant is less than 18 years old, he can be charged with a third-degree felony offense, which can lead to 5 years in prison and a $5,000 fine.
Lewd and Lascivious Exhibition (Indecent Exposure)
Such behavior occurs when a person intentionally exposes his or her genitals in a lewd and lascivious manner, masturbates in public, or commits a sex act that does not involve physical contact with the victim. As with lewd and lascivious conduct, individuals under 18 can be charged with a third-degree felony.
Lewd and Lascivious Molestation
Lewd and lascivious molestation offenses do involve physical contact with the victim. When a person touches in a lewd way the breasts, genitals, or buttocks of a victim who is less than 16 years old or forces the victim to do the same to him, lewd and lascivious molestation charges are possible. When the offender is under 18, and conducts lewd and lascivious molestation on a minor under 12, he may face second-degree felony charges. A conviction may lead to 15 years in prison, a fine of $10,000, and registration as a sex offender.
Don’t wait for your minor child to interact with law enforcement. Be sure to speak with an experienced criminal defense lawyer skilled in juvenile crimes to protect his or her reputation and future. Contact The Law Office of Gabriel & Gabriel by calling 561-622-5575 or email us online. Be sure to ask for a free consultation to discuss your case.