Defending Against Sexual Abuse Charges In Iowa
Sexual abuse crimes are terrible and can have lifelong effects on survivors and those close to them. But that doesn’t mean that everyone accused of these crimes is guilty. The possibility of an innocent person losing their reputation and perhaps their freedom is a tragedy as well. That’s why it’s imperative that defendants put our sexual assault lawyers in their corner, Our team at Lombardi & Miler Law Firm PLLC will believe in them and fight for their rights.
Have you been accused of sexual assault? Call us today at 515-513-5324 or contact us online to schedule a consultation with one of our Des Moines sexual assault attorneys.
The Definition Of Sexual Abuse In Iowa
Section 709 of the Iowa criminal code deals with sexual abuse crimes. The definition generally applies to any allegation that involves a sex act performed by an unconsenting victim. This can include cases in which the victim is considered unable to give consent by being underage, mentally disabled or intoxicated. Sexual abuse includes crimes such as rape and sexual assault, which are felonies, as well as indecent exposure, which is generally treated as a misdemeanor.
What Are The Penalties For Sexual Assault In Iowa?
Assault charges will likely be felonies, and Iowa law has three different felony classifications, which are as follows:
- A Class A felony is at the top of the ladder, and conviction on this charge can result in a life prison sentence. Sexual assault may be considered Class A if there was serious injury done to the victim.
- A Class B felony has a max sentence of 25 years behind bars. It is applied when the assault was performed with the threat of force, even if that force was not carried out.
- And, while a Class C felony might the lowest a district attorney would bring, it can still put someone in jail for 10 years and see them fined as much as $13,660 (+$2,049 surcharge). It covers most any other acts of assault, including those involving minors as well as those in which the victims were believed to have been deliberately drugged.
Iowa Sex Offender Registry
The jail sentence is steep, but the sentence is still just beginning when a convicted defendant can finally leave the prison. They will be required to register in the Iowa Sex Offender Registry. Those convicted of felony assault will stay registered for life. Even a misdemeanor conviction will mean 10 years on the registry. Being on the registry can make rebuilding one’s life all the more difficult. It is something that is available for everyone to see, from potential employers, landlords and even neighbors.
The consequences are serious, but there is hope. One of our attorneys, Nicholas Lombardi, is committed to vigorously investigating your case and giving you advice on the right defense strategy. Call us today at 515-513-5324 or fill out our online contact form to arrange for a free consultation with our sexual assault team in Des Moines.
How To Defend Against Sexual Assault Charges
A person accused of sexual assault might be presumed guilty by people in their community. Their own family members and others they thought they could trust might even turn on them. They should know that our Des Moines sexual assault attorneys will fight with every tool in the legal toolbox.
That starts with the most basic premise of criminal law in America – that defendants are considered innocent unless proven otherwise. The court of public opinion might rush to judgment, but a court of law cannot. A vigorous lawyer will go all out to ensure that a jury understands that.
Furthermore, our attorneys will also work diligently to present the jury with reasons to doubt the prosecution’s case. Another premise of criminal law is that guilt must be proved beyond a reasonable doubt. A jury cannot be 51% sure of guilt. It must be somewhere close to 100% sure.
The advance of science can be beneficial for defendants. DNA evidence can prove whether a person was at the scene of a crime. There are other cases in which a defendant may have been at the scene, but the encounter was consensual. In a he-said, she-said situation, the burden of proof is with the prosecution. Our Des Moines sexual assault lawyers might bring forth character witnesses to testify on behalf of the defendant.
Contact Our Sexual Assault Attorneys In Des Moines Today
Every case is different, and the best defense will depend on the unique circumstances of each one. That’s why defendants need our lawyers. They will spend more time on listening to them and studying the evidence than on prejudging the case.
Attorney Lombardi is someone who has worked his way up in law the hard way. In his background, he’s seen friends go to prison. He knows the system is far from perfect. He started Lombardi & Miler Law Firm PLLC so that defendants could have counsel whom they could easily get in touch with and trust.