The Best Strategy if You're Charged with a Violation Of Penal Code Section 288.5 – Continuous Sexual Abuse of a Child
This is one of the more serious crimes and if you've allegedly done a number of different acts with a child. If the child is under the age of 14 and there's more than 10 years between you and the child, you can bet the prosecutors are going to come at you with guns a-blazing.
They're going to want to put you away for life in prison if they possibly can and that means they're going to charge you with this California Penal Code Section 288.5 and you're looking at a potential sentence of 15 to life, possibly even more depending on exactly what they're claiming that you did (CALCRIM 1120).
So, obviously, some of these cases we need to defend because a person is innocent. One defense is, maybe you didn't do what they're claiming and they don't have any physical evidence that you did it,
Also, they don't have any proof by way of a SART exam showing that the child in question was abused and they don't have any witnesses to be able to tie you in to abusing any child. So, that would certainly be one defense.
Most of these cases where you're being charged with such a serious crime, obviously people consider testifying because they want to make sure they tell their side of the story since they're risking potentially going to prison for potentially 15 years to life.
Review of Evidence That Supports You
So, one of the things that we do as part of the defense is talk to you about exactly how we're going to present the evidence that supports you, and also talk about how you're going to be able to withstand cross-examination by the prosecutors.
They're going to have questions and they're going to look for inconsistencies in your story and obviously confront you with the evidence that they do have related to their claim that you somehow sexually assaulted a child.
It's not just one time. In order to get this Penal Code Section, you've got to do it at least three times. So, they're going to have to prove three separate incidences against you. So obviously, you want to sit down with your attorney and make sure that you get your defense together.
Another potential defense that I've seen utilized successfully is that the person that's accusing you of sexually assaulting a child multiple times is somebody who has an axe to grind and motive to lie against you.
For example, an ex-spouse or ex-girlfriend or somebody maybe who is angry with you, trying to gain an upper hand in a divorce — there's a whole host of different reasons that people make things up against another person.
So, obviously, that's something that we would want to sit down, talk about, strategize and make the best decision moving forward as it relates to your defense.
Also, we obviously want to make sure that if you are charged with this offense that it's something you want to do want to defend and want to fight the prosecutors. Because if you're guilty and they've got evidence that you did something wrong — maybe you admitted it for example — it's not a good idea to fight them.
It's just going to anger them and put them in a position where they are going to try to get a long prison sentence against you. So, we want to make sure that it makes sense to fight the case before we do that, otherwise you're going to put yourself in a much worse position.
Sex Crime Defense Lawyer in California
So, what I have you do is, we sit down, and we talk about what the best strategy is going to be. Obviously, I'm going to help you make the decision, but I have to have your input because you're the one that will suffer any consequences of a conviction.
So, if you need help or a loved-on needs help and they're in custody right now, pick up the phone. Make the call. Let's talk about it and I will do everything I can to help you moving forward.
Hedding Law Firm is a top-ranked criminal defense law firm located in Los Angeles County at 16000 Ventura Blvd #1208 Encino, CA 91436. Contact us for a free case evaluation at (213) 542-0979.