Sex crimes are typically prosecuted very harshly. This is especially true in Prince William County, where they are taken very seriously. Any kind of sex crime that includes an element of violence is going to be prosecuted even more harshly and quite often the court and the prosecution will ensure that the defendant is incarcerated in the time leading up to their court date. Something else to consider is that prosecutors will typically request the maximum allowable sentencing option. Because of this, it is essential to have a qualified attorney by your side as you face sex crime charges.
The type of evidence presented to the judge and jury depends on the nature of the sex crime in question. One of the most frequent types of evidence used is testimonial, usually put forth in the form of a statement provided by the plaintiff. Usually, there is also some kind of physical evidence brought to the attention of the court, such as a DNA sample, or the results of a rape kit. If brought forth, the latter is often presented specifically along with the testimony of the nurse that performed the rape kit test on the plaintiff.
The sex offender registry is a list of individuals who have been convicted of a certain type of sex crime. In essence, it is a publicly accessible database that allows people to find the addresses and specific information about individuals who are convicted of sex crimes in the state of Virginia.
For the most part, any sex offense that is classified as a felony has to be registered. Occasionally, misdemeanors will need to be registered if the convicted person had other misdemeanors that involved specific aggravating factors, such as the inclusion of a minor. Registry is originally a lifetime status, but there are different time frames for certain offenses in which a person may petition to be removed from the registry. How long a person will be listed on the registry is also going to be determined by that person’s particular conviction.
Being a registered offender can have a severe impact on the life of the defendant. A lot of employers will look harshly upon individuals convicted of sex crimes. As a result, one of the most immediate and problematic repercussions is that it can put a person’s employment in jeopardy. That, coupled with the fact that a person is on a registry limits the type of work that he or she is able to do. It is also very difficult to obtain federal assistance if someone is on a sex offender registry. In addition, they are not going to be allowed to be near certain types of schools or certain types of organizations involving children. It could prevent a person from getting housing as well.
Besides the impact on a person’s current employment as well as future jobs, finding a place to live can be very difficult. For example, registered sex offenders must remain a certain distance from schools and parks. In urban areas and big cities such as New York City or Washington DC, a person could be precluded from living almost anywhere in order to maintain the required distance from schools. The housing implications are in addition to the social stigma attached to sex crimes, which can be a lifelong struggle and makes it significantly harder for the accused to rebuild their life and take the necessary steps to prevent any future setbacks.
The consequences of a sex crime conviction are both enduring and severe. Being listed on a sex offender registry is only one small element of the overall implications. If you are facing these charges, it is essential to work with an attorney by your side to make sure your story is presented fairly in court and all the facts are taken into consideration.