Sex crimes are no laughing matter, especially if it happens to someone innocent. Accusing someone of this act requires a lot of information and background. The other side has to have irrefutable proof that something did happen to the other person. Accusing someone of a sex crime has an impact on both lives. A sex crime is not just about one side versus the other.
Below is some information on how to start the process.
1) Hiring A Lawyer
There is no way either side can go through the process without representation.
“Only a fool represents himself as the client.”
Anyone convicted of a sex crime can spend the rest of the lives in jail, on the sex offender registry, or both. The police may wish to talk to Sam about what happened. Sam should refrain from talking to the police until after he has met with his lawyer.
“Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law.”
They say that line for a reason. The other side can start to use anything Sam says against him, even if he is innocent.
Some people like to wait until they get charged to begin their search for a sex offender lawyer. Sam has been advised against that, and for good reason. The prosecution can dig up anything to use on him before charges are filed.
“Hire a lawyer. The court will appoint one for you if you cannot afford one.”
Same should try to find one on his own. The reason is that some of the court-appointed lawyers are ill-equipped to handle a case like this. Some of the court-appointed lawyers are overloaded with cases. They take the case without much interest and information.
“I just got handed this case on my way in here. I am new at this.”
That is the last thing Sam needs.
2) The Interview Process
Sam wants his case to go well. Sam is innocent and he knows it. The other side has trumped up charges on him for some reason. Sam needs to speak to a few lawyers before he picks one. He needs to see referrals. He needs to check the bar site. More importantly, he needs to visit with the person face-to-face. Sam wants to explain his side of the story.
Sam needs a lawyer who is invested in him. Sam needs a win and so should his lawyer. His lawyer needs to believe in what he says. Sam should sit down and start interviewing some people. Sam cannot be afraid to move on if he feels a specific lawyer is not going to work well.
Sam needs to know how long the person has been practicing. Has the person ever tried a sex crime before? How did it go, if they did? The last thing Sam needs is a newbie arriving on the case. He needs someone who knows how these cases and the law works. The other side is going to try to prove their case around every turn. Sam needs someone who is not afraid to be intimidated and win.
3) Your Life, Your Choice
There are questions that need to be asked upfront, including questions about the fees. Lawyers who are great at their jobs are expensive.
What is more important? The fee? The vindication?
- a) Does the lawyer work on a contingency plan?
- b) Does the person have a fixed rate? Do they work on billable hours?
- c) Is Sam going to need a retainer as a down payment?
First impressions say a lot. Sam should make his choice based on logic and his gut instinct. Sam should pick someone he feels comfortable around. He will spend a good chunk of time with this person. Sam will be revealing a lot of personal details about his life for the case. Sam needs to know that he can count on the person without any reservations.