Sex crimes criminal litigation is one of the most difficult and complex areas of the law for many reasons. In addition to the public’s general distaste for the evidence often presented in these cases, cross examination of the victims who are often minors requires a specific set of skills. Furthermore, there is a misconception that children would not make such things up or that a woman would not lie about being raped. Time and time again though in Houston courts, Michael Pham has proven that both of these statements are false. Moreover, the sex crimes prosecution unit is serviced by overworked social workers who seem to be trained to believe that something must have happened if an allegation was made, overzealous prosecutors out to make a name for themselves and elected judges who do not want challengers alleging that “he let a child molester go free.”
It is an uphill climb defending sex crimes. With that in mind, any Houston area resident charged with a sex crime of any nature should immediately contact an aggressive criminal defense attorney with skill and experience in defending sex crimes like Mr. Pham. Examining all statements made by the “victim” and any other witnesses, is crucial, as is a deep investigation into those witnesses’ backgrounds. Some allegations arise out of divorces, child custody disputes and other times of family stress. Mr. Pham has found that many rape cases arise because police officers simply take the word of the accuser and completely discount the accused’s account. Finally, the sex offender registry reporting requirement is complicated as well, but Mr. Pham’s goal is always an acquittal or dismissal so that registration is not an issue for his clients.
In Texas, rape cases are classified as sexual assault cases, and when the victim is an adult they can take one of two forms. Nonconsensual sex is prosecuted under the general sexual assault statute, which is a 2nd degree felony. Sexual relations with someone who is unable to consent, whether because of consciousness, age, or mental capacity also falls under this statute. However, when the crime is particularly violent, involved a weapon, there were death threats or where the victim is young or elderly, the prosecution may elect to travel under the aggravated sexual assault statute. In that case, the case is presented as a first degree felony.
When the victim in a sex crimes case is a child, there are a number of laws under which the prosecution might choose to build their case. In addition to the obvious charges, it is also a crime to fail to prevent sexual assault on a child if it is reasonable to do so. Finally, as we all know, adult use of controlled substances can often have the end result of exposing children to sexual conduct whether intentionally or unintentionally. Doing so is prohibited in Texas under the sexual abuse statutes.
If you or a loved one is facing criminal charges for sex crime, and you want an experienced and aggressive criminal defense lawyer, contact Houston sex crimes attorney Michael H. Pham at (713) 236-7791.