Fighting sexual assault charges in Pennsylvania
Few crimes carry the stigma of a sex crime. If you are convicted of a sexual offense, you are not just given a sentence; you are often marked as a sexual offender for life. Defendants convicted of certain sexual charges are required to register with the state under Megan’s Law. Whether you are charged with indecent assault, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse (or IDSI), rape, or statutory sexual assault (statutory rape), it is important to have an experienced attorney at your side as early in the process as possible. If you are facing charges of rape or another sex crime, call Criminal Defense Lawyer William R. Bickerton at (412) 596-8124 for a case evaluation.
Bickerton Law is located 15 minutes from Downtown Pittsburgh in the North Hills of Pittsburgh.
Frequently Asked Questions about facing sexual offenses in Pennsylvania
What are some of the sexual offenses in Pennsylvania?
The following are some of the sex crimes in Pennsylvania:
- Statutory sexual assault (Statutory Rape: A defendant has sexual intercourse with a person under 16 and more than 4 years younger than the defendant)
- Involuntary Deviate Sexual Intercourse (IDSI)
- Sexual Assault
- Institutional Sexual Assault
- Aggravated Indecent Assault
- Indecent Assault
- Indecent Exposure
- Sexual intercourse with an animal
- Indecent contact with a minor
- Possession of child pornography
- Unlawful dissemination of intimate image
What if there is no physical evidence showing that a sexual assault or rape took place?
Under Pennsylvania law, a person can be convicted of rape or any other type of sexual offense without any physical evidence. In fact, juries are specifically instructed that they can convict a defendant of rape based upon the victim’s statements alone.
How can I fight an allegation of sexual assault?
The first step is by not making any statements to the police. The second step is to hire a criminal defense attorney who is trained and experienced in fighting sex crimes. Although no two cases are the same, a lawyer experienced in fighting allegations of sexual assault will know how to properly handle the preliminary hearing, how to obtain and challenge the evidence, and how to work to get the best result possible in your case.
What if I plan on entering a guilty plea?
Even if you plan on pleading guilty, you still need to have an experienced attorney by your side to go through the evidence to make sure that you are pleading to the right offense and to help you get the best deal possible. A good criminal defense attorney will also explain all of the extra consequences, including Megan’s Law registration and employment issues.