5 Things to Do If You Are Charged with Sexual AssaultApr 06, 2018 by Criminal Defense, Sex Crimes in
Being charged with sexual assault is very serious no matter what the circumstances of your situation may be. It is important to stay calm while also acting without delay to take the necessary steps required to build a strong defense against false accusations. A skilled sexual assault attorney will understand how to gather evidence and build a strong case on your behalf.
Steps to Take After Being Charged with Sexual Assault
When you’re charged with sexual assault, you’ll likely have dozens of questions running through your mind. While you’re wondering about the impact even a charge will have on your life, it’s important to keep the following five steps in mind:
1. Contact an Attorney
A skilled sexual assault lawyer understands what a person is going through when they are charged with a serious crime. This can be an extremely confusing and stressful situation, and it’s important to have a knowledgeable legal team by your side from the beginning. Your lawyer can help you successfully handle law enforcement questioning and your arraignment hearing which will be held soon after your arrest. Additionally, it’s important to note that your lawyer will need sufficient time to gather evidence to build a case that can defeat your charges.
2. Stop All Communication with Your Accuser and Third Parties
It’s understandable to be confused and upset after someone accuses you of a sex crime. You may want to speak with your accuser to try and resolve the issue, or you may feel the urge to speak with third parties or the media in order to tell your side of the story. Do not do any of this without first discussing it with your sexual assault lawyer. California has many laws to protect the privacy and safety of alleged sex crime victims, and reaching out may violate the law or make your case more difficult. Therefore, you should avoid the following:
- Contacting your accuser for any reason
- Discussing your case with third parties such as friends, co-workers, or the media
- Any unnecessary activity on social media, especially regarding your criminal charges
3. Create A Timeline of Events
Your lawyer will be able to build a strong defense by piecing together what really happened, and your recollection of events can be of great help. It’s important to write down everything that you know regarding your relationship with the alleged victim and the incident that resulted in your arrest. Memories can fade quickly, so it’s important to write down your timeline as soon as possible. Do not forget to include any detail that comes to mind, and begin assembling your timeline immediately after your arrest.
4. Begin a List of Possible Witnesses
A comprehensive list of witnesses can be of great help to your sexual assault lawyer as they build your case. Witnesses do not only include those who may have been there during the incident that resulted in your arrest, but also those who know the character and general behavior of both you and your accuser. Begin compiling a list of possible witnesses immediately. Some important witnesses may include:
- The family and close friends of you and your accuser
- Those present at the incident that resulted in your arrest
- Current and former employers, teachers, and co-workers
- Medical professionals familiar with you and your accuser
5. Stay Positive About the Outlook of Your Case
It’s very easy for anyone to be overwhelmed after being charged with a sex crime. It is very important to keep a positive outlook and to know that your legal counsel is fighting for the best possible outcome in your case. Remaining positive will help you address your situation aggressively and without delay, which will help improve your chances of a successful outcome.
A Sexual Assault Attorney from Michael McKneely, Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Help
Being charged with a sex crime is extremely serious. If convicted of a sex offense, you may face a long prison sentence and required registration as a sex offender. It is important to remain calm and contact a sexual assault attorney from Michael McKneely, Criminal Defense Lawyer as soon as possible. We have defended many clients against false accusations of sexual assault, and we know what it takes to protect your rights.
For a free case consultation, contact us today at (559) 443-7442.