Mankato Sex Crimes Attorney

Being accused of a sex crime is a very serious allegation. While sex crimes can range in severity, the majority of them are felonies. With a felony sex crime on your record, you’ll have to register as a sex offender in addition to spending time in jail and paying hefty fines. In every state, courts take sex crimes very seriously. Whether you’re accused of statutory rape, date rape, sexual assault, or other criminal sexual conduct, you need effective legal representation to defend your charges.

A sex crime allegation doesn’t always mean you’ll be convicted. Many times, the actual facts of the case show the charges should be reduced. In some cases, there isn’t enough evidence to substantiate the charges. Furthermore, there are cases where a crime never actually occurred. Your attorney will collect the necessary evidence and help you get your charges reduced or dismissed if possible.

Severity of Charges

There are varying degrees of sex crimes, and they’re defined by the specific actions you allegedly committed:

  • First degree sexual conduct is any act that resulted in penetration of the victim’s body.
  • Second degree is any sexual conduct other than penetration.
  • Third degree is sexual penetration under certain circumstances. For example, if a 16 year old has sex with a 13 year old, it isn’t considered third degree sexual conduct. If the victim is under 13, it is. Furthermore, if the victim was coerced into sexual penetration, it is considered third degree.
  • Fourth degree is engaging in any of the actions that would be considered third degree, but without penetration.
  • Finally, fifth degree sexual conduct is any nonconsensual sexual contact or exposing oneself to a child under 16.

All sex crimes fall into these categories, whether they’re internet crimes, sexual assault, molestation, solicitation, rape, or other acts. Obviously, the more serious the allegations, the more severe the sentencing will be.

Criminal Sexual Conduct Penalties in Minnesota

First degree sex crimes can result in up to 30 years in prison and fines of up to $40,000. Furthermore, you’ll have to agree to conditional release, which means that even after you’re released from prison, you’ll undergo sex offender treatment and monitoring for up to 10 years.

Second degree sex crimes can be sentenced with up to 25 years in prison and $35,000 in fines. Third and fourth degree convictions will have maximum sentences of 15 and 10 years in prison, respectively. Finally, fifth degree sexual conduct is usually considered a gross misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to one year in prison. The majority of these sex crimes will require you to register as a sex offender, which will have a significant impact on your life.

Defenses for Sex Crimes

There are several defenses for sex crime allegations. Generally, mistake of age isn’t a valid defense, but there are some cases where it’s a viable argument. The best defense is a thorough examination of the facts. It’s not uncommon for the allegations to be more severe than the actual events that occurred. Your attorney will work with you along every step in the process and give you realistic advice as to possible outcomes. 

Contact an Experienced Sex Crimes Defense Lawyer

At Knutson+Casey Law Firm, we’re highly experienced in a variety of criminal defense laws, including sex crimes. We believe everyone has the right to an expert defense team, regardless of the charges being brought against them. We work tirelessly on behalf of our clients in Mankato, Austin, and Owatonna, and our methodical approach leaves no stone unturned.

If you’ve been accused of committing a sex crime, it’s important to work with experienced sex crime defense attorneys who understand the complexities of sex crime defenses and penalties. It’s our job to work as hard as possible to get charges reduced, and in some cases, dismissed. Contact us today to see how we can help you.