What Should I Do if My Child is Accused of a Sex Crime in California?

What Should I Do if My Child is Accused of a Sex Crime in California?

As a parent, it’s inherent that you protect your child from any violence or harm that may cross their path. This includes shielding them from adult predators. However, few parents consider the opposite: the possibility that their child might be the perpetrator. Yet, child-on-child sexual abuse is far from uncommon and is an issue often ignored and overlooked. As a result, you may feel lost, unheeded, and without a sense of support if faced with this challenging situation.

If your child has been accused of a sex crime in California, you may have a number of questions running through your head, such as whether they will be charged as an adult, if they’re required to register as a sex offender, and if they’ll face time in prison. It’s crucial that you understand your child’s rights and the next steps you can take to protect them from harm. For legal assistance, contact the experienced lawyers at the Aron Law Firm as soon as possible. 

What Happens After Your Child Is Accused of a Sex Crime?

Learning that your child has been accused of a sex crime can be a difficult pill to swallow. Not only are you likely confused and upset, but you may be unsure how to approach the situation in the immediate aftermath of the case.

First, note that the police may ask your child to appear at the police station for an interview. It’s crucial that you speak to a lawyer before talking with law enforcement or agreeing to an interview.

Next, know that if your child is arrested and booked into a juvenile detention center, it’s required by law that you’re promptly notified. They may be held in this facility for up to 72 hours, at which point there will be a hearing to discuss if there was probable cause that a crime was committed and whether or not it makes sense for them to be released. The hearing officer may impose certain conditions, such as a curfew or electronic monitoring.

Will Your Child Be Tried as an Adult If Accused of a Sex Crime?

If your child’s case is more severe, such as in the case of rape, they may be transferred to an adult court. The factors that play a role in this decision include the following: 

  • Your child’s age
  • Your child’s mental and emotional status
  • Your child’s ability to understand the nature of the offense
  • Whether there is treatment available through the juvenile court system that could prevent the commission of similar offenses
  • If the offense was violent

It’s imperative that you do everything in your power to keep your child’s case in juvenile court. Avoiding adult court can help your child sidestep a lengthy prison sentence with adult offenders. However, it’s important to note that while juvenile courts focus more on treatment than on punishment, your child may still be facing incarceration, community service, and fines.

Will Your Child Have to Register as a Sex Offender after an Accusation?

A conviction for a sex offense may also require your child to register as a sex offender. Prior to release from prison, jail, a hospital, or probation, sex offenders who are required to register will be notified in writing of this obligation. If placed on the registry, a sex offender must notify their local law enforcement agency when they change their employment, address, or contact information. An experienced lawyer may be able to help your child avoid the sex offender registry.

Contact a Best-in-Class Criminal Defense Lawyer at The Aron Law Firm

Contact the Aron Law Firm today for any additional questions or to discuss your case with one of our California criminal defense lawyers. Our knowledgeable team is dedicated to protecting your rights by investigating your case in detail and building a strong defense. Our lawyers understand California sexual abuse laws and may help you avoid the consequences that stem from this offense. 

At the Aron Law Firm, we have experience helping shield clients from a wide variety of criminal charges. This includes taking a client-centered approach that aims to make the legal process as painless as possible. To speak with a top rated criminal defense attorney, schedule a consultation by calling (805) 500-7745 or completing our online contact form today.