Indianapolis Child Molestation Lawyers
Defending Individuals Accused of Child Molestation in Indiana
If you are convicted of child molestation, you could face harsh prison sentences, steep fines, and other consequences. Additionally, you must register as a sex offender, which would have a major impact on your life, such as losing the ability to live in certain areas, the ability to find employment, and much more.
With all of these consequences, it is vital that you find an Indianapolis child molestation attorney as soon as possible. At The Criminal Defense Team, we understand that these charges are very serious, and we will work to fight for your rights and best interests.
What is Considered Child Molestation in Indiana?
According to Indiana Code, specifically Title 35, Article 42, Chapter 4, engaging in fondling or touching with a child under the age of 14 for the purpose of arousing or satisfying sexual desires is considered child molestation in Indiana.
Child molestation in Indiana can be classified as a Level 1, 2, 3, or 4 felony, depending on the severity of the offense and the presence of aggravating factors.
The classification determines the following potential penalties:
- Level 1 Felony: The most serious child molestation offenses, often involving violence or multiple victims. Conviction can result in a substantial prison sentence, typically ranging from 20 to 40 years, and potentially a fine of up to $10,000.
- Level 2 Felony: Child molestation offenses that are serious but may not involve the same level of violence or multiple victims as Level 1 felonies. A Level 2 felony can lead to imprisonment for 10 to 30 years and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Level 3 Felony: Moderate child molestation offenses that are less severe than Level 2 but still significant. Penalties may include a prison term of 3 to 16 years and a fine of up to $10,000.
- Level 4 Felony: Less severe child molestation offenses, often involving a lesser degree of sexual contact or fewer aggravating factors. Conviction can result in a prison sentence of 2 to 12 years and a fine of up to $10,000.
Individuals convicted of certain child-related sex offenses in Indiana are typically required to register as sex offenders. Registration may include providing personal information and maintaining updated records for a specified period or even for life, depending on the offense.
Legal Defenses Against Child Molestation Charges
Child molestation is a serious criminal offense, and individuals accused of such charges may use various legal defenses to protect their rights and challenge the accusations. It's essential to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney to determine which defenses may be applicable to your specific case.
Here are some common legal defenses that may be used in child molestation cases:
- False Accusations: One of the most common defenses is to argue that the allegations are entirely false or fabricated. This may involve presenting evidence that the accuser has a motive to lie or that there is no credible evidence to support the claims.
- Mistaken Identity: In some cases, a defendant may claim mistaken identity, asserting that they were not the person responsible for the alleged offense. This defense may rely on alibi witnesses or other evidence that places the defendant elsewhere at the time of the alleged incident.
- Lack of Evidence: Defense attorneys may challenge the prosecution's case by arguing that there is insufficient evidence to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. This can include questioning the credibility of witnesses or the reliability of physical evidence.
- Consent and Age of Consent: Depending on the age of the child and the specific circumstances, a defense may be that the sexual activity was consensual and that the child was old enough to give legal consent under Indiana's age of consent laws.
- Improper Police Procedures: Defense attorneys may scrutinize the methods used by law enforcement during the investigation, such as the handling of evidence, interviews with witnesses, or the gathering of statements. If there were violations of the defendant's rights or procedural errors, it could lead to suppression of evidence or dismissal of charges.
- Mental Incapacity or Insanity: A defense based on the defendant's mental state may be employed, arguing that the accused was not mentally capable of understanding the nature of their actions or distinguishing right from wrong at the time of the alleged offense.
- Witness Credibility: Attorneys may challenge the credibility of witnesses, including the alleged victim or others who may have testified against the defendant. This can involve impeaching witnesses with prior inconsistent statements or evidence of bias.
- Character Evidence: In some cases, the defense may introduce evidence of the defendant's good character and reputation within the community to rebut the allegations.
How We Can Defend You
If you are facing child molestation charges, you need an Indianapolis child molestation lawyer who understands the legal system. You need an attorney who will fight for your rights and your freedom. At The Criminal Defense Team, we have handled a wide range of criminal cases and have helped many people in our community.
Our team understands how the legal system works, and we will work tirelessly to defend you and protect your rights. We will investigate your case thoroughly, and we will work to have any evidence that was gathered illegally thrown out. Our goal is to have any charges against you reduced or dropped, and we will work to have you acquitted of all charges if possible.
“We would recommend the Criminal Defense Team to anyone.” - Vicki
“This is Mr. Andrew Baldwin’s specialty and he knows his stuff!” - Donita
“I feel they genuinely care about others and work together quite well as a team.” - Brandon