Orlando Attorney Experienced in Defending Against Sex Crime Charges
Protecting the rights of clients facing tumultuous consequences
Being accused of a sex offense can turn your life upside-down. A conviction often carries a substantial prison sentence and required registration as a sex offender for the rest of your life. Even if you are found to be innocent, you can have a terrible time restoring your reputation. For all these reasons, you must retain an attorney with the experience, knowledge and determination to put forth the best defense possible. When you contact The Law Offices of Tad A. Yates, P.A., you get capable counsel to protect your rights and fight for your freedom.
Representing Central Florida defendants against full gamut of sex-offense charges
For more than 27 years, Tad A. Yates has defended individuals accused of state and federal sex crimes. He is prepared to manage your defense in cases of:
- Sexual battery — Florida law defines sexual battery as “oral, anal, or vaginal penetration” by an offender’s sexual organs or “any other object.” Sexual battery can be charged as a first degree, life, or capital felony depending on the age, status and capacity of the victim and whether the offense was committed with violence.
- Statutory rape — Sexual intercourse with a person under the age of consent, which in Florida is 18 years old is a sexual battery in Florida. However, there is a close-in-age exception that a person not older than 24 to legally engage in sexual activity with a minor of at least 16 years of age.
- Sexual misconduct with the developmentally disabled— Florida law protects institutionalized individuals from sexual predation by workers, contractors or volunteers in facilities governed by state agencies. The offense is a second degree felony and consent of the victim is not a defense.
- Child molestation — Lewd and lascivious molestation is sexual touching between a defendant and a minor that does not involve penetration. Penalties vary from three to 15 years in prison depending on the age of the victim and of the defendant.
- Lewd or lascivious battery — An adult who engages in “sexual activity with a person 12 years of age or older but less than 16 years of age” commits a second degree felony. If becomes a first-degree penalty if the offender is 18 or older and has previously been convicted of a similar act.
- Internet child pornography — Florida and federal law make it illegal to create, possess or distribute sexual images of children.
- Unlawful use of the Internet — Any person who knowingly uses the Internet to engage in sexual conduct with a child (or a person they believe to be a child) or to gain a guardian’s consent for sexual conduct with a child is guilty of a third degree felony.
- Traveling to meet a minor — Florida law prohibits any person from traveling within, or out of the state for the purpose of engaging in sexual conduct with a minor or another person believed to be a minor. This is a second degree felony.
- Cybersex with a minor — Lewd or lascivious exhibition occurs when a person uses a computer to perform sexual activity with a victim who is less than 16 years of age. An adult offender is charged with a second degree felony. A juvenile who commits the offense with another may be charged with a third degree felony.
Mr. Yates has ample experience vigorously defending these types of cases and is aware of the stigma that a sex offense charge or conviction can carry. An arrest is a public record and the release of a defendant’s name can destroy job prospects, relationships and the reputation of a person falsely accused of a sex crime. Having an attorney by your side during all stages in the investigation — even prior to an arrest — is crucial to protect your rights. If law enforcement or the state Department of Children and Families contact you, call an attorney immediately before you agree to any meeting.
Dealing with possible sex offender registration
Convicted individuals who are designated as sexual predators or sexual offenders must register their address with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement each year and every time they move. The public has access to this online database, exposing the registrants to scorn and hostility long after they have served the sentence imposed upon them. These and other serious restrictions can ravage one’s family life, job prospects and educational opportunities.
When your liberty is on the line, call an experienced Central Florida attorney for a consultation
The Law Offices of Tad A. Yates, P.A. is experienced at raising strong defenses to sex-offense charges and at pursuing all avenues of negotiation to avoid the drastic consequences of conviction. Call us at 407-608-7777 or contact us online to schedule a consultation.