July 18th, 2022

Wrongly Accused of a Sex Crime? Here’s What to Do

Being wrongly accused of a sex crime can tarnish your reputation and have a devastating impact on all aspects of your life. If you or a loved one has been charged with sexual abuse or assault, you may feel overwhelmed and wonder what to do next. The criminal defense attorneys at Gross McGinley, LLP in Allentown, PA, offer advice about how to safeguard your rights and help you understand the charges you may be facing. 

Do Not Speak To Law Enforcement Officers Or Prosecutors

Even if you haven’t been charged with a crime yet, it’s critical to refrain from speaking with the police or prosecutors without an attorney present. You may believe that if you simply tell your side of the story, everything will work out because you’re innocent. However, seemingly straightforward statements can be twisted and used against you by law enforcement officers and prosecutors.

Do not answer any questions or give a statement to police or prosecutors without a criminal defense attorney by your side. Your lawyer will advise whether you should answer certain questions and ensure your rights are protected.

Contact a Criminal Defense Attorney

If you are accused of a crime, it’s vital to contact a criminal defense lawyer as soon as you get wind of the allegations. The penalties for sex crimes are harsh and can have serious, lifelong repercussions. A conviction can result in substantial prison time and also require you to register as a sex offender when you are released. It can also impact your ability to find housing and employment, and take an emotional and financial toll on you and your family. 

Hiring an experienced sex crime lawyer can help to ensure you receive the best defense possible. Your attorney will assess the situation and investigate the circumstances surrounding the accusations. When it comes to criminal law, there are specific procedures that must be followed, like reading Miranda rights prior to questioning someone who is in custody. If any legal or procedural errors occurred during your arrest or the police investigation, your attorney may be able to have certain evidence excluded or have your case thrown out altogether.

Watch What You Say And Do While Your Case is Pending

Generally, you should be on your best behavior and be careful about everything you say or do if you’re facing sex crime charges. It’s also vital to understand that if you talk about the allegations with loved ones or anyone else, they can be called as witnesses and anything you tell them may be used to make you appear guilty. Avoid discussing your case via text, email, voicemail, or social media as well. Most criminal defense attorneys recommend deactivating your social media accounts until your case is completed.

Do Not Contact the Alleged Victim

You may be tempted to clear the air with your accuser. However, this is something you should never do–even if they are an intimate partner or family member. Do not call, email, text, IM, show up in person, or ask someone else to speak to them on your behalf. It’s also a bad idea to contact any of their friends or family. Doing this can seriously jeopardize your case. However, if you’re currently involved in a divorce or custody battle, make sure to contact your family law attorney to inform them of any sex crime accusations.

Preserve And Gather Evidence

When it comes to building a solid defense, evidence is key. Writing down everything you remember about what happened and making a timeline of events can be very helpful to your legal team. It’s also important to give your attorneys all evidence you think may be relevant to your case, including physical evidence, photographs, text messages, emails, voicemails, and social media posts. Make a list of potential witnesses, including character witnesses, your attorney may want to interview.

Be Open With Your Defense Attorney

It’s important to remember that you and your defense attorney are on the same team. Their priorities are to protect your rights and interests and work toward achieving the best possible outcome for your case. They may ask you to reveal very personal details about your life and the alleged assault, which can be hard to do when you feel your actions are being scrutinized. Your lawyer is there to defend you, not to judge you. There are valid reasons why they may ask you to answer certain questions or divulge sensitive information. Being honest can help your lawyer avoid surprises that may put your case at risk down the road.

The criminal defense attorneys at Gross McGinley, LLP adhere to the highest standards of professionalism and confidentiality. We approach every case with compassion, integrity, and respect no matter what type of charges you may be facing.

Contact A Pennsylvania Sex Crime Attorney

At Gross McGinley, LLP, in Allentown, PA, our defense attorneys have a track record of success in representing clients in all types of criminal matters. If you or a loved one has been accused of a sex crime, you can trust us to be your staunch advocates and protect our clients’ rights and interests. To schedule a consultation with a criminal defense attorney, contact us online or call us at 610-820-5450 today.

The content found in this resource is for informational reference use only and is not considered legal advice. Laws at all levels of government change frequently and the information found here may be or become outdated. It is recommended to consult your attorney for the most up-to-date information regarding current laws and legal matters.