West Palm Beach Sex Crime Lawyer
Scott Berry is an Experienced Florida Criminal Defense Lawyer Handling Sex Crimes Charges in West Palm Beach and Palm Beach County
There are few crimes that come with a higher social stigma than sex-based offenses. If you or your family member is facing a sex crimes charge, it is normal to feel embarrassed, confused, intimidated, and overwhelmed by the prospect of defending the case.
These are very serious criminal charges. A conviction could follow a person for the rest of their life. This is not to mention the fact that certain sex crimes carry lengthy prison sentences. If you or your family member has been arrested, or is being investigated, for a sex crime, it is imperative that you speak to a qualified criminal defense attorney.
Scott Berry is an experienced West Palm Beach sex crimes defense lawyer with a board certification as a criminal law expert. For more than 15 years, Mr. Berry has provided the highest quality of legal representation to clients throughout South Florida. He has a comprehensive understanding of the full range of sex crimes charges in Florida. If you or your loved one is facing a sex crimes charge in Palm Beach County, please do not hesitate to contact our law firm today for free, fully private legal guidance.
The Extreme Consequences of a Sex Crime Conviction
A sex crime conviction can not only lead to incarceration but can also devastate a person’s reputation and future job prospects for life. If you have been charged with a sex crime you need an excellent criminal defense attorney who has the experience and knowledge to mount your legal defense. Sexual offenses like child pornography, rape, sexual assault, child molestation, lewd molestation, lewd behavior, capital sexual battery, prostitution, and battery on a child should not be taken lightly as they carry severe consequences.
Florida is considered one of the toughest states to live if you have been convicted of a sex crime. Many counties have ordinances placing restrictions on where a sex offender can live, and there is a statewide registry for sexual offenders and sexual predators. Failure to register as a sexual offender or sexual predator can result in additional felony convictions and prison time. Your criminal defense attorney should be expertly versed in all the Florida sex crime statutes to properly defend you in a court of law. Scott Berry is relentless in providing all his clients accused of any sex crime the best criminal defense and provides expert legal counsel during times of legal uncertainty. So, get the peace of mind you have been hoping for and pick up the phone and speak directly to West Palm Beach sex crime lawyer Scott Berry by reaching out to our law firm today.
Sex Crimes Charges We Handle in Florida
Scott Berry has the experience and legal expertise to defend you if you have been charged with a sex crime in the State of Florida. Scott Berry began practicing law in 2001 and is Board Certified in Criminal Trial Law by the Florida Bar Board of Specialization and Legal Education. Mr. Berry has extensive legal experience in aggressively representing his clients in federal and state courts. If you or your family member has been charged with a sex crime in West Palm Beach, FL, you need a legal advocate who has the skills and experience to handle your specific type of case. At Scott Berry Law, P.A., we offer outstanding advocacy for those charged with the following sex crimes:
- Rape / Statutory Rape
- Sexual Battery/Assault
- Failure to Register
- Child Pornography
- Battery on a Child
- Capital Sexual Battery
- Lewd / Lascivious Battery, Molestation, Behavior
Florida Statute, 794.011 Sexual Battery
(1) As used in this chapter:
(a) “Consent” means intelligent, knowing, and voluntary consent and does not include coerced submission. “Consent” shall not be deemed or construed to mean the failure by the alleged victim to offer physical resistance to the offender.
(b) “Mentally defective” means a mental disease or defect which renders a person temporarily or permanently incapable of appraising the nature of his or her conduct.
(c) “Mentally incapacitated” means temporarily incapable of appraising or controlling a person’s own conduct due to the influence of a narcotic, anesthetic, or intoxicating substance administered without his or her consent or due to any other act committed upon that person without his or her consent.
(d) “Offender” means a person accused of a sexual offense in violation of a provision of this chapter.
(e) “Physically helpless” means unconscious, asleep, or for any other reason physically unable to communicate unwillingness to an act.
(f) “Retaliation” includes, but is not limited to, threats of future physical punishment, kidnapping, false imprisonment or forcible confinement, or extortion.
(g) “Serious personal injury” means great bodily harm or pain, permanent disability, or permanent disfigurement.
(h) “Sexual battery” means oral, anal, or vaginal penetration by, or union with, the sexual organ of another or the anal or vaginal penetration of another by any other object; however, sexual battery does not include an act done for a bona fide medical purpose.
(i) “Victim” means a person who has been the object of a sexual offense.
(j) “Physically incapacitated” means bodily impaired or handicapped and substantially limited in ability to resist or flee.
(2)(a) A person 18 years of age or older who commits sexual battery upon, or in an attempt to commit sexual battery injures the sexual organs of, a person less than 12 years of age commits a capital felony, punishable as provided in ss. 775.082 and 921.141.
(b) A person less than 18 years of age who commits sexual battery upon, or in an attempt to commit sexual battery injures the sexual organs of, a person less than 12 years of age commits a life felony, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, s. 775.084, or s. 794.0115.
(3) A person who commits sexual battery upon a person 12 years of age or older, without that person’s consent, and in the process thereof uses or threatens to use a deadly weapon or uses actual physical force likely to cause serious personal injury commits a life felony, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, s. 775.084, or s. 794.0115.
(4) A person who commits sexual battery upon a person 12 years of age or older without that person’s consent, under any of the following circumstances, commits a felony of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, s. 775.084, or s. 794.0115:
(a) When the victim is physically helpless to resist.
(b) When the offender coerces the victim to submit by threatening to use force or violence likely to cause serious personal injury on the victim, and the victim reasonably believes that the offender has the present ability to execute the threat.
(c) When the offender coerces the victim to submit by threatening to retaliate against the victim, or any other person, and the victim reasonably believes that the offender has the ability to execute the threat in the future.
(d) When the offender, without the prior knowledge or consent of the victim, administers or has knowledge of someone else administering to the victim any narcotic, anesthetic, or other intoxicating substance which mentally or physically incapacitates the victim.
(e) When the victim is mentally defective and the offender has reason to believe this or has actual knowledge of this fact.
(f) When the victim is physically incapacitated.
(g) When the offender is a law enforcement officer, correctional officer, or correctional probation officer as defined by s. 943.10(1), (2), (3), (6), (7), (8), or (9), who is certified under the provisions of s. 943.1395 or is an elected official exempt from such certification by virtue of s. 943.253, or any other person in a position of control or authority in a probation, community control, controlled release, detention, custodial, or similar setting, and such officer, official, or person is acting in such a manner as to lead the victim to reasonably believe that the offender is in a position of control or authority as an agent or employee of government.
(5) A person who commits sexual battery upon a person 12 years of age or older, without that person’s consent, and in the process thereof does not use physical force and violence likely to cause serious personal injury commits a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, s. 775.084, or s. 794.0115.
(6) The offense described in subsection (5) is included in any sexual battery offense charged under subsection (3) or subsection (4).
(7) A person who is convicted of committing a sexual battery on or after October 1, 1992, is not eligible for basic gain-time under s. 944.275. This subsection may be cited as the “Junny Rios-Martinez, Jr. Act of 1992.”
(8) Without regard to the willingness or consent of the victim, which is not a defense to prosecution under this subsection, a person who is in a position of familial or custodial authority to a person less than 18 years of age and who:
(a) Solicits that person to engage in any act which would constitute sexual battery under paragraph (1)(h) commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
(b) Engages in any act with that person while the person is 12 years of age or older but less than 18 years of age which constitutes sexual battery under paragraph (1)(h) commits a felony of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
(c) Engages in any act with that person while the person is less than 12 years of age which constitutes sexual battery under paragraph (1)(h), or in an attempt to commit sexual battery injures the sexual organs of such person commits a capital or life felony, punishable pursuant to subsection (2).
(9) For prosecution under paragraph (4)(g), acquiescence to a person reasonably believed by the victim to be in a position of authority or control does not constitute consent, and it is not a defense that the perpetrator was not actually in a position of control or authority if the circumstances were such as to lead the victim to reasonably believe that the person was in such a position.
(10) Any person who falsely accuses any person listed in paragraph (4)(g) or other person in a position of control or authority as an agent or employee of government of violating paragraph (4)(g) is guilty of a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
When Should I Hire a West Palm Beach Sex Crimes Defense Lawyer?
Those suspected of a sex crime need to take immediate action. If you are suspected of a sex crime or you are being actively investigated, it is time to get a professional legal advocate by your side: Don’t wait until it is too late. Call West Palm Beach defense lawyer Scott Berry Law today at 561-281-7155.
One of the biggest mistakes that defendants make in sex crimes cases is waiting too long to speak to a criminal defense lawyer. The sooner you get an attorney by your side, the better off you will be. You should not give a statement to a law enforcement officer without first consulting with a Florida sex crimes defense attorney. While it is understandable to want to assist the police in a sex crimes investigation, it is not in your interest to talk to them without your lawyer by your side. This is true even if you are entirely innocent of the charges.
Understanding Sex Offender Registration in Florida
Those convicted of a sex crime in Florida will likely be required to register their status with the state’s law enforcement agency. Florida has registration requirements for ‘sexual offenders’ and ‘sexual predators’. There is a lengthy list of crimes for which a conviction or guilty plea will require mandatory sex offender registration in Florida. The failure to register could result in jail time.
Sex offender registration is an issue that must be considered in every sex crimes case. It is crucial that defendants speak to their attorney about potential sex offender registration before a plea is entered. To learn more about how the Florida sex offender registration requirement might affect you, please contact our experienced West Palm Beach sex crimes lawyer today.
Contact Our West Palm Beach Sex Crimes Defense Lawyer Today
At Scott Berry Law, P.A., our top-rated West Palm Beach sex crimes lawyer understands the stigma that comes along with sex crimes charges. We firmly believe that every person is entitled to a strong legal defense. If you or a family member was charged with a sex-based offense in South Florida, you need professional legal guidance.
To arrange a free, fully confidential initial defense consultation, please give us a call today at 561-281-7155. From our office in West Palm Beach, we represent clients throughout Palm Beach County, including in Palm Beach Gardens, Boca Raton, Jupiter, Riviera Beach, South Bay, Lake Worth, and Lantana.