5 Things To Keep in Mind if you are charged with sexual assault
Legal

5 Things To Keep in Mind If You’re Charged With Sexual Assault

Being charged or accused of any crime is a life-altering and terrifying experience. Crimes of a sexual nature such as sexual assault are very serious charges and can have a deeply negative effect on the rest of your life.

In the United States, sexual crimes come with hefty penalties and perpetrators face serious jail time if convicted, and they are also rampant. In 2018 alone, there were an estimated 734,630 people that were victims of a sexual crime.

If you are charged with a sexual crime, you may be facing a daunting and intimidating road ahead. Here are 5 things to keep in mind if you are charged with sexual assault.

5 Things To Keep in Mind if you are charged with sexual assault

  • The police and prosecutors may not treat you kindly

Crimes of a sexual nature are viewed as especially heinous by the police and prosecution. Often, they will side with the victim and give them the benefit of the doubt. This is because incidences of false reports are quite low (between 2% and 10%) while statistics for actual assaults are quite high.

When you’re being interviewed by the police or the prosecution, try to keep in mind that they are doing their jobs and are trying to extract a confession. Keep your cool and be polite and respectful.

  • You need a lawyer

Even if the accusations against you are 100% false, you still need a lawyer. Because of the nature of the sexual assault, it is often the word of one person against the word of another, which means that getting a sex crime attorney who is familiar with these types of charges is key to making sure you don’t end up wrongfully incarcerated.

  • Public perception is a powerful thing

Sexual assault cases are often hotbeds for publicity. The nature of the crimes makes it a very attractive news story, which can quickly sway the public’s perception of the crime.

Because of this, you may start to feel like everyone is against you and there’s no chance you’ll get a fair trial, but don’t be discouraged. Your lawyer is with you to make sure that you aren’t railroaded by the media and to remind people that you are innocent until proven guilty.

  • Be aware of how you act

Because of the delicate nature of sexual assault crimes, it’s important to be aware of your behavior after the charges and while awaiting trial. The way you talk to the police, to your friends, and even to your family can be used against you. If you’re seen out drinking heavily, partying, or engaging in behavior that may make people question your moral compass, then you will be giving your lawyer a harder job to defend you.

During this time, it’s important that you listen to your lawyer and try to stay quiet and out of the public eye.

  • Social media is not your friend

You may be tempted to start reading what’s happening on social media related to your case or to start voicing your opinion about your case, but it’s imperative that you don’t do this. Social media is not your friend at this time, and reading comments or commenting on what’s happening with your case will only serve to upset you and could also give the prosecution ammunition. Encourage your friends and family to also refrain from commenting and to not share with you what they’re seeing on social media either.

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