Child molestation, like all sex crimes, is one of the most serious crimes that someone can be accused of committing. When facing a child molestation charge a sophisticated defense is mandatory. In these cases there is rarely physical evidence, witness testimony is typically he-said-she-said.
These cases can be defended. When arrested for child molestation it feels like the world is against you. Family, friends, and other loved ones - who were supposed to be there for you - may leave your side. If you are in custody, inmates may treat you poorly. People may assume that you are guilty.
Not us. We are here to fight with you, fight for you, and fight beside you. Don't Fight Alone.
Child Molestation - O.C.G.A. § 16-6-4
A person commits the offense of child molestation when such person:
(1) Does any immoral or indecent act to or in the presence of or with any child under the age of 16 years with the intent to arouse or satisfy the sexual desires of either the child or the person; or
(2) By means of an electronic device, transmits images of a person engaging in, inducing, or otherwise participating in any immoral or indecent act to a child under the age of 16 years with the intent to arouse or satisfy the sexual desires of either the child or the person.
Child Molestation Law Put More Simply
The law provides two separate ways someone can be charged with Child Molestation. As seen above, you can be charged under O.C.G.A. § 16-6-4(a)(1) or O.C.G.A. § 16-6-4(a)(2). We will call them "subsection one" and "subsection two" respectively.
Subsection One - O.C.G.A. § 16-6-4(a)(1) - An Act Committed in Person
Under this code section, you can only be convicted of child molestation if the government proves beyond a reasonable doubt that you committed an immoral or indecent act to a child, or in front of a child, with the plan of arousing the child or yourself.
Subsection Two - O.C.G.A. § 16-6-4(a)(2) - Pornography
Under this code section, the state must also prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. But, the charge is a little different. If you have been charged under this code section the prosecutors are accusing you of sending a pornographic image to a child by electronic means.
Electronic means could be anything on the computer, whether email, tumblr, twitter, snapchat, or anything else. It also could be a cell phone, facetime, skype anything like that.
No matter what they must prove your guilty, and you must not fight the charges alone.
How Much Time Can I Get for Child Molestation?
Georgia law sets forth a a wide sentencing range for child molestation. The minimum sentence for a first time offense is five years and the maximum is twenty. For a second offense, the penalties get steeper. Upon a second conviction for child molestation the range is ten years to thirty years, OR the prosecutors can seek life imprisonment. Additionally, any felony conviction for child molestation will require the defendant to register as a sex offender.
There Are Some Exceptions
- If the alleged victim is 14 or 15 and the offender is 18 or younger that person can only be convicted of a misdemeanor.
- When some conditions are present, the prosecutors may charge you with aggravated child molestation. In that scenarior the penalties are substantially worse - including a minimum sentence of 25 years in prison.
What Do I Do If I Have Been Charged With Child Molestation?
You fight, but you don't fight alone. Contact us right away. Utilize a free consultation with Ryan Brown, discuss the case with him, and strategize to defend against these charges.