Sexual Abuse Defense
St. Louis Sex Crime Attorney Serving Missouri
Have you or someone you love been accused of sexual abuse or a similar
offense? These are delicate matters that require the immediate involvement
of an experienced criminal defense lawyer if your rights and interests
are to be protected to the fullest extent of the law. At The Hammer Law
Firm, LLC we provide aggressive defense against
sex crimes in St. Louis and across Missouri. If you are interested in finding out
how we can help you, please do not hesitate to call our offices for a
strictly confidential case review. You can also review the information
on this website to learn more about sexual abuse and other sex-related
crimes in Missouri.
Intentionally subjecting another person to unwanted sexual contact constitutes
the criminal offense of sexual abuse. In Missouri, this offense may be
charged as a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the age of the victim,
the type of sexual contact allegedly committed and other circumstances
surrounding the incident. With the harshest penalties enforced, a defendant
may face up to 15 years in state prison.
"Sexual Abuse" Defined & Penalties Explained
Sexual abuse is defined and its penalties outlined under Missouri Revised
Statutes § 566.100 and § 566.101. According to these sections:
Sexual abuse in the first degree occurs when one "subjects another person to sexual contact when that
person is incapacitated, incapable of consent, or lacks the capacity to
consent, or by the use of forcible compulsion."
Sexual abuse in the second degree occurs when one "purposely subjects another person to sexual contact
without that person's consent."
Sexual contact is defined as "any touching of another person with
the genitals or any touching of the genitals or anus of another person,
or the breast of a female person, or such touching through the clothing,
for the purpose of arousing or gratifying sexual desire of any person."
Accordingly, a person who stands accused of inappropriately touching another
person against that person's will or without his or her consent may
face criminal charges and serious penalties, as long as this contact was
intentional. The severity of penalties will vary in accordance with the
type of charges filed; i.e. first degree sexual abuse versus second degree
First degree sexual abuse is a class C felony punishable by up to 7 years
in prison and a fine of up to $5,000. If a deadly weapon is used in the
commission of the crime, if the victim is subjected to sexual contact
with more than one person or if the victim is less than 14 years old,
however, the defendant may face class B felony charges and 5 to 15 years
Second degree sexual abuse is typically charged as a class A misdemeanor,
punishable by up to 1 year in jail and a fine of up to $1,000. If the
defendant has a prior conviction under this section, used a deadly weapon
in the commission of the offense or committed said offense as part of
a ritual or ceremony, class D felony charges may apply and a defendant
may face up to 4 years in state prison and a fine of up to $5,000.
Challenging Your Sex Offense Charges
From the instant you are accused of sexual abuse or any type of sex crime,
your reputation, career and freedom may be at stake. Due to the nature
of these crimes and the harsh penalties that may be imposed, defendants
need to take immediate action to protect their constitutional rights.
That is where a St. Louis sex crime attorney can make all the difference.
At The Hammer Law Firm, LLC, we realize what you are up against. Our team
is prepared to take on overzealous prosecutors and law enforcement personnel
as we work tirelessly to protect our clients' interests inside and
outside the criminal courtroom.
Call today to see how we can help with your case.