Being convicted of a prostitution-related crime could impact your social life and damage your reputation in the community. It also leaves you with a criminal record that could limit your future educational opportunities, employment, housing, and professional licenses.
The legal team at Ruane Attorneys could work to get charges dismissed or reduced. Call a New Haven solicitation lawyer immediately if you were arrested for trying to buy sex or engage a prostitute’s services.
The Laws for Sexual Solicitation in New Haven
Connecticut General Statutes §53a-83 makes it a crime to solicit sexual acts. The law defines soliciting as arranging to exchange something of value for sexual contact or asking someone to exchange sex for something of value.
This broad statute makes it a criminal act to agree to give something in exchange for sex, even if the people allegedly involved had no sexual contact, and nothing of value was exchanged. Making an appointment to pay someone for sexual services is illegal under the solicitation statute.
Solicitation is a Class A misdemeanor, which is the most serious category of misdemeanor crimes in this state. Upon conviction, a person could face up to one year in jail, probation, and a $2,000 fine. However, many people with solicitation convictions do not serve any time in jail. If someone pleads guilty to solicitation or is convicted by a jury, a local attorney could present persuasive arguments in favor of alternative sentencing rather than incarceration.
Defeating a Solicitation Charge
Police target prostitution-related crimes and prosecute them harshly. Many defendants facing these charges are caught up in stings and other police operations.
When the other party to the solicitation is an adult, and the person accused of soliciting is a first offender, a prosecutor might consider dismissing a charge. A New Haven attorney can also work to get the charges dismissed by showing flaws in the police procedures. For instance, there may not have been probable cause to enter the premises, or they may have failed to get the proper legal authorization to conduct surveillance.
Even if the police work was proper, a legal professional could challenge the prosecutor’s evidence of intent to make sexual contact. When prosecutors know a New Haven defense attorney will force them to prove every element of their solicitation case, they often decide to expend their resources on more serious crimes.
Soliciting a Child Over the Internet
Soliciting an adult for sex is a misdemeanor. However, soliciting a minor is a felony that could lead to a significant prison sentence and sex offender registration upon conviction.
Charges for soliciting a minor could result when an adult uses the internet, electronic communication, or a social media platform to interact with a minor for sexual purposes. Even if the adult and the minor never met in person, engaging with someone under 18 in a sexual manner is illegal and punished harshly.
Law enforcement officers often impersonate young people to induce adults into suggestive interactions. An adult could be convicted of soliciting a minor if they believed that the person they were communicating with was a minor, even if it was an adult police officer impersonating a minor. A New Haven attorney could review the police records, transcripts of communications, and other evidence for signs that the police initiated the sexual content or entrapped the accused to commit solicitation.
Call a New Haven Attorney if You Face a Solicitation Charge
If you were arrested on accusations that you tried to buy sexual services, get an attorney working for you right away. The stigma of a soliciting charge could cause long-term consequences for your family life, career, and reputation. You might face prison and sex offender registration if the charge involved a minor.
A New Haven solicitation lawyer could mount a vigorous defense against the charges. Call Ruane Attorneys as soon as you get arrested.