Sexual Assault Lawyers
Defense of Sexual Assault Cases
If you have been unjustly accused of committing a sex assault or other sex related offense, you can be confident that The Law Offices of Carlos H. Davalos has significant experience in assisting clients accused of these crimes and helping them obtain a positive result on their case. If you have been arrested or accused of a sex offense involving a minor, we can also assist you in navigating the component of the DCFS investigation which often runs concurrently or before the criminal case as well. Ramnifications involving an outcry of sex assault can trigger rapid developments on a case up to including an interview with detectives at a police station, an arrest, and a bond hearing in court. Hiring an attorney ASAP on these cases can greatly benefit a client’s ability to control the flow of information reaching the prosecuting attorney as well as obtaining a favorable bond court decision which the client can afford to post if a charging decision has been made. Below is an outline as to some components of a sex crime investigation and what to expect if one is accused of a serious sex crime offense.
Charges Related to Sexual Assault
Some of the offenses which can be categorized as “sex offense” charges, which, in our eyes, is an offense which triggers SORA registration requirements (Sex Offender Registration Act) includes:
• Predatory Criminal Sexual Assault 720 ILCS 5/11-1.40 (Class X Felony)
• Aggravated Criminal Sexual Assault 720 ILCS 5/11-1.60 (Aggravated if Felony)
• Criminal Sexual Assault 720 ILCS 5/11-1.20 (Will Trigger Reporting Even If Misdemeanor)
• Public Indecency 720 ILCS 5/11-30 (Will Trigger Reporting Depending on Number of Counts)
Law Enforcement Investigation of Sex Crimes
Although a sex offense is possible where the victim is an adult, much of our case load has involved those acccused of sex offenses against minors. In these situations, it can be possible that DCFS will be the government agency of first contact with the client. DCFS will do everything in its power to obtain a confession from the accused as certain rights will not trigger under theirs, a civil, as opposed to a criminal, investigation. If the agency of first contact is a police agency, then a sex offense will typically be headed by detectives tasked with investigating those offenses. Those detectives will likewise be attempting to obtain a quick and full confession from the client, albeit, with a prior advisal of Miranda rights which a client will often waive. The confession is oftentimes the strongest and most convincing piece of evidence DCFS or law enforcement will obtain in a sexual assault investigation. Hence, they will move quickly to immediately obtain a confession once a police report for sex assault has been filed by a complainant.
It is imperative that upon an investigating agency making contact for a sex assault investigation, that a person accused:
• Not participate in any interviews with DCFS or police detectives without a defense attorney of their choosing in the room and without having first been given the opportunity to consult with a lawyer.
• Invoke your right to silence and an attorney immediately upon given a chance by either police or DCFS to make a declaration.
• Immediately make contact with an attorney skilled and experienced in sex crime defense specifically. A sex crime has a number of moving parts including civil repercussions, SORA registration requirements, and jail/prison time exposure, all of which must be identified and considered as soon as possible in a sex crime case.
The following information can be used to help better understand the steps in a sex crime case and provide information to those who have to deal with an accusation of a sex crime.
What you cannot do is assume you can resolve a sex crime investigation, or sex crime case, on your own. The detectives and investigators who will be relayed against you will be well trained and experienced in these cases. They know how to spot deception and contradictory statements and turn the information you attempt to provide to them against you, whether its the truth or not. Once an investigation begins, detectives will be seeking to quickly obtain evidence to use against you; they are not seeking to interview you in order to help you prove your innocense.
In sum, it is important that you retain defense counsel immediately at the outset of a sex crime investigation. A sex crimes attorney can help you navigate your case from the very beginning and in some instances have the investigation stopped or dismissed without criminal charges being filed against you.
Sex Assault Defense Lawyers
A sex assault case represents one of the most challenging cases a criminal defense lawyer can handle, for both its complexity and possible severity. For this reason hiring a lawyer with experience in this field is a big help as the issues can be anticipated ahead of time in order to give the client a clear view on everything that is happening on their case. For sex cases, a client will be seeking a point person to be completely in charge for their defense; hiring a firm that assigns a set of lawyers or different point persons on your case will likely prove disastrous to the client as all case information by necessity needs to be centralized in order to obtain a postive outcome.
¶1. False Accusations
In some situations, the motive for a person to lie and fabricate charges has been set in motion long before, via a negative prior relationship with the client. In a case against minors perhaps the minor has felt maltreated due to discipline or other acts the minor found offensive. Or perhaps the minor has dealt with prior sexual assault experiences with other people and is now projecting those bad acts as being done by the client. These are just a number of the scenarios which can present a situation where false accusations are made against the client. Once the minor has made an outcry, they can then be led on to create additional ficticious details in interviews with caseworkers completed with improper leading questioning.
¶2. Empty or Baseless Medical Reports
A minor is taken to a hospital for a sex assault examination and no evidence is found concerning DNA or other physical indicia demonstrating that a sex assault has recently occured with the complainant. The lack of medical report or hospital report evidence indicating the presence of a recent sex assault is evidence that can work in your favor once analyzed and brought out later in either ensuing litigation or conversations with the prosecutors assigned to your case.
¶3. Contradictory Statements
An interview begins with a complainant first telling a family member or friend that nothing wrong had occured. Or a video-recorded interview with a caseworker reveals that the person accusing indicates that a sex offense never occured. After some time or number of interviews the story changes and the accusation of sexual assault is now made despite statements to the contrary made initially. Changing stories are sometimes present in a sex case with a complaining witness uncertain of the details regarding their own accusations. The doubt expressed at varying points may lead to a judge or jury doubting the reliability of the statements as well, leading to the dismissal of the charges.
¶4. No Corroborating Witnesses
The allegations occured in a place populated by other people, perhaps a home where cousins, brothers, and sisters also lived. Despite the location being populated by others at the time, no one heard or seen any of the acts alleged against the client. In addition, perhaps no one also living in the home has ever seen the client commit an act which could be considered wrongdoing. The client may also maintain positive contacts in the community and no other accusers arise with the people whom the client has frequent contact with. With this factor the government may need to explain why the accuser is making these allegations against the client when no one else whom the client has also had contact with has not.
¶5. Accuser Has Previously Documented Issues
After an investigation its shown that the complainant has suffered from demonstrable mental issues at work or school. The accuser has a prior history of meeting with psychologists for mental issues. Suicidal tendencies have previously been documented. Or the person has a prior history of making these accusations where the investigations have previously been dropped or cases dismissed. This evidence once gathered can affect the reliability of the statements made against you in your case.
¶6. Lack of Force or Threats
There have been no allegations that the client used force or threats in committing the acts. Perhaps the act occured between consenting adults. If so and there is lack of evidence on the use of force, it can be argued that the charges be dismissed due to lack of evidence of force or withdrawal of consent previously given. A consentual act could prove as a defense in your case if the evidence is there to support it or likewise if the evidence cannot show that force was used or consent was withdrawn.
The above was only some the things that an attorney skilled in sex crime cases must assess when directing the defense of your case. Charging decisions, sentencing possibilities, familiarity with your courtroom prosecutor and judge, unspoken policies as to how prosecutors and the courtroom will likely rule in the event of sentencing; all of these should be immediately familiar to defense counsel if your case is to have any chance at obtaining a favorable result.
If you or a family member have been accused of a sex crimes offense, be it a misdemeanor or felony, consider the hiring of The Law Offices of Carlos H. Davalos, which has seen considerable litigation in these kinds of cases. Attorney Davalos has the experience you will need in navigating your case from start to finish and permit you to keep your life, and oftentimes, your very freedom, intact. Please contact us today for your first comprehensive sex assault or sex crime consultation.
The Law Offices of Carlos H. Davalos
2210 W. North Ave. Suite 6
Melrose Park, IL 60160
Tel: (773) 312-0234
Chicago Offices: 2923 N. Milwaukee Ave.,Suite 911
Chicago, IL 60618
Bridgeview Offices: 7667 W. 95th St.
Hickory Hills, Illinois 60457
Rolling Meadows Offices: 2260 Hicks Road, Suite 409
Rolling Meadows, IL 60008