The mere accusation that a person committed a sex offense can have serious implications and potentially affect the rest of his or her life. Crimes charged as sex offenses have an extremely negative stigma in our society. An allegation from a member of the public, not even from the police, can rip a person's life apart. A person can lose child custody, employment, and reputation because of the mere allegation of a sex offense.
In Washington, a crime that will require a person to register as a sex offender is commonly referred to as a sex offense. Sex offenses can range from a gross misdemeanor, such as Communicating With a Minor for Immoral Purposes, to Class A Strike-Level crimes such as Rape or Child Molestation in the First Degree. These crimes require a person to register as a sex offender in their community and allow the public to access information about their crimes. This requirement can limit a person's ability to find employment, gain custody of their children, and many other privileges.
Apart from the registration requirement that a sex offense mandates, other severe consequences will arise. Significant jail or prison time usually accompanies a conviction. Once a person leaves prison, the Department of Corrections can limit where the person goes, to whom he or she can talk, and even what he or she can watch on television or access on the computer. In addition to these consequences, and depending on the charge, a person can be subject to the Indeterminate Sentencing Review Board. (ISRB). If a person is convicted of a crime subject to the ISRB, he or she may be held in custody past the original sentence due to the nature of the conviction. Finally, in Washington state, a person convicted of a sex offense can be subject to the "Two Strike" law governing sex offenses. This law allows a term of life imprisonment if the person has two convictions for certain sex offenses.
The lawyers at Powers Law Group will work to mitigate the charge and potentially plea to a charge that does not require you to register as a sex offender. There are also times when registration can be deleted and allow a person to move on with his or her life.
Our office always recommends that you speak to an attorney immediately if you think you will be accused of a crime, especially if this crime is a sex offense. The serious consequences that can arise from such a charge can be life altering. The attorneys at our law firm have the training and experience allow to effectively represent someone facing these allegations.