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Sexual abuse is taken very seriously in Florida. If you are convicted of a sex crime in the Sunshine State, you will probably spend many years in prison, pay financial restitution, and have to register as a sex offender. Conviction of sex crimes is life-changing, and recovery will take many years.
If you were accused of sexual abuse, you still have rights, which should be defended tenaciously. The first step is to hire an experienced and knowledgeable Tampa sexual abuse lawyer. Your future depends on having a strong defense against sexual abuse allegations; it is a bad idea to go about it on your own. Call Taracks & Associates today at 813-281-2897 for a free initial consultation.
Why Choose Us?
There are many sexual abuse lawyers in Tampa, and choosing one for your case can be a daunting task. Your life is on the line, so don’t leave your case in the hands of an inefficient and inexperienced attorney. At Taracks & Associates, our Tampa sexual abuse attorney is different from the rest. Reasons to choose our firm include:
- Our clients have expressed their appreciation for our diligent work. Take a look at testimonials from past clients.
- Barry Taracks is a former prosecutor, so he knows how the court system works and how to best defend against sexual abuse charges.
- Barry has been the lead attorney in hundreds of criminal jury trials.
- We are licensed to practice law in state and federal courts, which means that we can defend your case, no matter what court the case is in.
You may think that choosing a Tampa sexual abuse attorney is a hard decision. Actually, it is an easy one. At Taracks & Associates, the way we care for our clients and provide a vigorous defense make us the firm to handle your case.
How a Tampa Sexual Abuse Attorney Can Help You.
It is not a good idea to defend yourself against hardened prosecutors. In any situation, you want to be equal to or better than your opposition. Prosecutors go through rigorous schooling and are tasked with serving the public, often being elected by their community members. Prosecutors want to be re-elected so they will come down hard on those accused of criminal activity. Here is where a seasoned Tampa sexual abuse attorney can help. Our firm will assist with the following:
- Meet with you initially to discuss your case and provide options for a defense
- Gather all of the evidence against you to find holes and faults in the prosecutor’s case
- Appear with you at court hearings and speak on your behalf
- Speak with the detectives that investigated the charges against you
- File any necessary documents on time with the court
- Negotiate with the prosecutors to get you the best plea deal and hopefully keep you out of jail.
Sexual abuse is a serious offense, and the best way to fight it is with a strong defense. Defending yourself in court against these serious accusations is not recommended. You may go to jail for a long time, which could be avoided. Call the Tampa sexual abuse lawyers at Taracks & Associates at 813-281-2897 for a free consultation.
What Are Sexual Assault Charges?
Florida law 794.011 defines sexual battery as “oral, anal, or female genital penetration by, or union with, the sexual organ of another or the anal or female genital penetration of another by any other object.” In addition to state law, you can also be charged with a federal crime under 10 U.S. Code § 920.
There are very harsh penalties for being convicted of sexual abuse, including time in prison, fines, and registering as a sex offender. Jail time for sexual abuse includes the following:
- 15-30 years in jail if the victim is over 12 years old
- 25 years to life if you are under 18 years of age and the person you sexually abused is under 13 years old
- 30 years to life in prison if you used physical force against your victim or used a deadly weapon
- 25 years to life in prison if the victim was under 12 years old.
In addition to jail time, you may be asked to pay financial restitution of $10,000 to $15,000. Last, you will be required to register as a sex offender. As you can see, the penalties for being convicted of sexual abuse are extremely high, and your life will be completely altered for a long time. Hiring a knowledgeable and experienced Tampa sexual abuse lawyer can make a vast difference in the amount of jail time you get, as well as possibly lower fines.
If You Are Accused of Sexual Abuse, Follow These Initial Steps
Being accused of sexual abuse is a life-changing experience, especially if you are completely innocent of the crime. If this happens to you, there are some initial steps to take to make sure your rights are secured. Some of these steps are:
- Speak to a sexual abuse attorney right away. Before you say anything to law enforcement, you have a right to have an attorney present. Your lawyer is there to speak on your behalf and will make sure that your rights are defended.
- Avoid all contact with your accuser. Do not speak to or even go near your accuser. The accuser has already filed a report, and there is nothing you can do to change that.
- Collect evidence. This is an extremely important step because it can possibly prove that you were not the perpetrator of the sexual abuse. Evidence that shows you were not where the alleged victim says you were may exonerate you. Also, get contact information for people you were with at the time of the alleged sexual abuse.
Defending a Sexual Abuse Case
There are many ways to defend against a sexual abuse charge. In order to obtain a conviction, the prosecutors have to provide evidence that you perpetrated the crime. An experienced Tampa sexual abuse attorney knows the methods to defend your case and hopefully have some or all of the evidence against you thrown out. Some of the defenses that are used in sex crime cases are:
- Being falsely accused – The alleged victim might have a vendetta against you and will falsely accuse you of sexual abuse.
- Mistaken identity – If the abuse occurred in a dark place, the victim may believe that you were the perpetrator, even though you weren’t. Also, if the victim was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, they might not have the mental capacity to correctly identify the accused.
- False testimony from witnesses – Any witnesses to the alleged abuse may be mistaken about what they saw or who the perpetrator was, or they may be friends of the victim and falsely accuse you of sexual abuse.
- Improper interrogation techniques – If you are interviewed by detectives, they could use illegal techniques to get you to admit to a crime you didn’t commit. Remember, do not talk to the police unless you have a lawyer present.
- Consent was given – Even though your accuser may say otherwise, if you can prove that they provided consent for the sexual encounter, we may be able to get the case dismissed.
Your Tampa Sexual Abuse Lawyer Answers Your Questions
We understand that each sexual abuse case is unique. However, there are some common questions that we get a lot from past and current clients that we thought we would provide the answers to. Some of those questions include:
Do I really need an attorney for my sexual abuse case?
While, legally, you can defend yourself, you should definitely get a Tampa sexual abuse attorney to represent you. One wrong move and you could spend many years in prison.
Will I have to register as a sex offender?
If you are convicted of sexual abuse in Florida, you will most likely have to register as a sex offender. However, we may be able to shorten the length of time of the registration.
Do the police need a warrant to search my house and other property?
Unless you give consent to the police, they cannot search any of your property unless they have a warrant.
How long does a sexual abuse case take?
That depends on the complexity of the case and whether you and the prosecutors are able to reach a fair plea deal. The case can drag on for years if it goes to trial.
Call our Tampa Sexual Assault Attorney Today
Accusations of sexual abuse, especially when they are not true, can be a scary time for the accused. At Taracks & Associates, we have been a part of a multitude of these types of cases and know how to defend them so you may receive a more lenient sentence or be found not guilty. Our attorneys work alongside clients to make sure that their rights are secured and they get fair treatment from the prosecutors.
If you have been accused of sexual abuse, call Taracks & Associates today at 813-281-2897.