Hudson County NJ Sex Crime Lawyer
Due to the serious nature of sex crimes, New Jersey holds these criminal offenses in a category all their own and the County Prosecutor’s Office typically has a specific trial team dedicated to handling these cases. No other criminal charges are more taboo or bring up as strong feelings and emotion as sex-related crimes, including sexual assault, criminal sexual contact, child pornography offenses, sexual assault, luring or enticing a minor, and lewdness. The victims of these cases are typically offered wide deference on their testimony and stance regarding prosecution of the alleged offender. This is why sex crimes and typically prosecuted to the fullest extent under law. Moreover, once you have been accused of a sex crime there is often a strong sense of judgment from people around you that you are in fact guilty before you ever even have your day in court. At Proetta & Oliver, our criminal defense attorneys are experienced in handling sex crimes in Hudson County and throughout New Jersey and understand the emotional toll these cases can take on everyone involved and the complicated nature of their defense. If you would like to learn more about your potential options and how we can assist with your sex offense charges, contact our local Jersey City office today at (201) 793-8018 for a free consultation with an experienced lawyer who can answer your questions and address your concerns.
Types of Sex Crimes in New Jersey
Our attorneys regularly represent both adults and juvenile defendants in Hudson County, New Jersey and surrounding areas. For your convenience, we have listed different types of sex crimes we handle and related information.
- Lewdness 2C:14-4
- Invasion of Privacy 2C:14-9
- Criminal Sexual Contact 2C:14-3(b)
- Aggravated Criminal Sexual Contact 2C:14-3(a)
- Sexual Assault 2C:14-2(b)
- Aggravated Sexual Assault 2C:14-2(a)
- Endangering the Welfare of a Child 2C:24-4
- Kidnapping 2C:13-1
- Criminal Restraint 2C:13-2
- False Imprisonment 2C:13-3
- Promoting Obscene Material 2C:34-3
- Prostitution & Solicitation
- Promoting Prostitution
The most common situation that can lead to sex crimes charges in New Jersey is often thought of as the forcible rape of another person. However, it is important to understand that many sex crime cases involve consensual sex. For instance, a defendant can be guilty of statutory rape if the person they had sex with was not at least 16 years old and therefore incapable of legally consenting to sexual engagement in the first place. It is also necessary to understand that not all sex crime charges involve an act of sexual penetration. For instance, criminal sexual contact charges can be filed against a person for any intentional touching of a victim that is deemed sexual in nature (e.g., involving the victim’s genitals) and that was unwanted by the other person. Additionally, these charges can be filed even when the unwanted sexual touching occurred over the victim’s clothes. Furthermore, while most people typically think of a serious sex crime like sexual assault as necessarily involving penetration, the NJ criminal code allows prosecutors to bring sexual assault charges in cases where the penetration was oral or digital. And in a case involving a child victim under the age of 13, penetration is not an element of the crime of sexual assault.
With the increasing use of the web over the past several decades, sex crime charges often stem from activity on the internet. Sharing child pornography online or receiving child pornography via email or through a file-sharing website are felony sex offenses in NJ. Other common internet sex crimes are the online solicitation of prostitution, using the internet for the promotion of prostitution, and online solicitation of minors.
What Determines the Degree of a Sex Crime Charge in New Jersey
In general, the term “sex crime” refers to any offense that involves sexual activity. Sex crime charges can include disorderly persons offenses like lewdness or harassment, fourth degree criminal sexual contact, third degree aggravated criminal sexual contact, third degree endangering the welfare of a child, second degree endangering the welfare of a child, second degree sexual assault, and first degree aggravated sexual assault.
If you are charged with a sex crime in New Jersey, the degree of the offense will depend on the details of your actions, the age of the victim, and your relationship to the victim. For example, the difference between second degree sexual assault and first degree aggravated sexual assault is that aggravated sex assault is charged when additional factors exist beyond the circumstances that constitute sexual assault. For each sex crime, New Jersey lists specific elements that the prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt. As in the example of the different between second degree sexual assault and first degree aggravated sexual assault, higher degree sex crimes typically involve a higher level of danger, violence, or morally objectionable conduct.
Specifically, sexual assault can be charged if you are more than 17 years old and you have sexual contact with someone younger than 13, sexual contact is combined with physical force, you have a position of trust and control over the victim, or the victim is between 13 and 16 years old and you are at least 4 years older than the victim. You can be charged with first degree aggravated sexusal assault if the victim is under 13 years of age, the victim is between 13 and 16 years old and you are a family member or have a position of trust and control over the victim, you commit sexual assault while threatening the victim with a weapon, you use force against the victim with the help of an accomplice, or you commit sexual assault against a person who is handicapped or incapacitated.
Jersey City Sex Crimes Attorney
There are many types of sex crimes which differ widely in seriousness and potential consequences depending on the surrounding circumstances. For instance, the alleged victim’s age, mental capacity, or physical disability may determine that the charges be upgraded to a more serious indictable crime. Moreover, certain sex crime convictions carry a mandatory requirement of Megan’s Law registration (also known Parole Supervision for Life) where you would have to register as a sex offender and that information could be given out to the public. These potential consequences can often make an already very difficult situation feel overwhelming. This is why it is our goal to provide every one of our clients who has been charged with a sex crime with complete confidentiality and respect as we work with them to protect their rights and achieve the best possible legal results. We are pleased to meet with prospective clients on nights and weekends by appointment. To meet with an experienced sex offense attorney at our office in Jersey City and receive a free initial consultation, please call us at (201) 793-8018.