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Sex Crimes under Florida Law

When an allegation of sexual violence occurs the stakes are incredibly high for the person accused. The person accused is facing a lengthy prison sentence and being designated as a sex offender which brings a lifetime of supervision making it difficult to find work or a place to live. 

These cases involving an allegation that the crime was sexually motivated often receive heightened media attention.

Attorneys for Sex Crimes in Florida

The attorneys at the Sammis Law Firm, P.A., represent clients charged with sex crimes throughout the Tampa Bay area.

We are experienced in practicing in the courtrooms throughout Tampa in Hillsborough County, Dade City and New Port Richey in Pasco County, Lakeland and Bartow in Polk County, Bradenton in Manatee County, St. Petersburg and Clearwater in Pinellas County, and Brooksville in Hernando County, Florida.

Call 813-250-0500.


False Accusations of Sexual Assault in Florida

As the usefulness of DNA evidence improves, individuals are being exonerated after serving long prison sentences for the crime of sexual violence. James Bain was exonerated on December 17, 2009, after serving 35 years for the kidnapping and rape of a child before DNA evidence proved that he did not commit the crime. 

The terrible nature of the crime often leads law enforcement officers to rush an investigation. Likewise, prosecutors often think that justice requires a hardball approach to prosecuting the charges even when holes in the evidence become apparent. No justice results if an innocent person is prosecuted while the real perpetrator of the crime remains free to commit other crimes.


Statistics for Sex Crimes in Florida

The number of charges for crimes of sexual violence in Florida has generally been falling since 2000. During the 2000-2001 fiscal year, Florida courts reported 4,196 sexual violence charges. Florida’s Trial Court Statistical Reference Guide estimates that more than 3,300 charges were filed for sexual offenses from the fiscal year 2008 to 2009.

Despite the number of crimes prosecuted, often cited studies estimate that one out of nine adult women in Florida has been the victim of a forcible rape at some time during her lifetime. For this reason, any sexually motivated crime is treated seriously under Florida law.


Types of Sex Crimes under Florida Law

Sexual offenses under Florida law include sexual misconduct, incest, lewd and lascivious offenses, and sexual battery. Those crimes include:

  • Sexual battery under Florida Statutes Chapter 794 (excluding sections 794.0235(5)(a) and (5)(b));
    • Sexual Battery — Victim Less Than 12 Years of Age § 794.011(2), Fla. Stat.
    • Sexual Battery — Victim 12 Years of Age or Older — Great Force § 794.011(3), Fla. Stat.
    • Sexual Battery — Victim 12 Years of Age or Older — Specified Circumstances § 794.011(4), Fla. Stat.
    • Sexual Battery — Person 12 Years of Age or Older § 794.011(5), Fla. Stat.
    • Sexual Battery upon Child 12 Years of Age or Older But under 18 Years of Age by Person in Familial or Custodial Authority § 794.011(8)(b), Fla. Stat.
    • Solicitation of Child under 18 Years of Age to Engage in an Act That Constitutes Sexual Battery by Person in Familial or Custodial Authority § 794.011(8)(a), Fla. Stat.
    • Engaging in an Act Which Constituted Sexual Battery by a Person in Familial or Custodial Authority Upon a Person Less than 12 Years of Age § 794.011(8)(c), Fla. Stat.
    • Engaging in an Act Which Injured the Sexual Organ of Another in an Attempt to Commit Sexual Battery by a Person in Familial or Custodial Authority Upon a Person Less than 12 Years of Age § 794.011(8)(c), Fla. Stat.
  • Unlawful Sexual Activity with Certain Minors § 794.05, Fla. Stat.

  • Lewd and lascivious offenses, including:
    • Committing Unnatural and Lascivious Act § 800.02, Fla. Stat.;
    • Exposure of Sexual Organs (In a Vulgar or Indecent Manner) § 800.03, Fla. Stat.;
    • Lewd or Lascivious Battery (Engaging in Sexual Activity) § 800.04(4)(a)1, Fla. Stat.;
    • Lewd or Lascivious Battery (Encouraging, Forcing or Enticing) § 800.04(4)(b), Fla. Stat.;
    • Lewd or Lascivious Molestation § 800.04(5), Fla. Stat.;
    • Lewd or Lascivious Conduct § 800.04(6), Fla. Stat.;
    • Lewd or Lascivious Exhibition Presence of Child § 800.04(7)(a), Fla. Stat.;
    • Lewd or Lascivious Exhibition Over Computer Service § 847.0135(5), Fla. Stat.;
    • Lewd or Lascivious Exhibition by a Detainee in the Presence of an Employee of a Facility § 800.09, Fla. Stat.;
    • Lewd or Lascivious Offenses for Exhibition, Molestation, or Battery Committed Upon or in the Presence of an Elderly or Disabled Person § 825.1025, Fla. Stat.;
  • Sexual misconduct including:
    • with a patient under Florida Statute Section 394.4593(2);
    • with a forensic client under Florida Statute Section 916.1075(2);
    • with a person with a disability Florida Statute Section 393.135(2);
    • by a psychotherapist with a client under Florida Statute Chapter 491;
    • by juvenile justice staff and a juvenile offender Florida Statute Section 985.701;
    • by corrections staff with an inmate or supervised offender under Florida Statute Section 944.35(3)(b);
  • Soliciting A [Child] [Person Believed By The Defendant To Be A Child] For Unlawful Sexual Conduct Using Computer Services Or Devices § 847.0135(3)(a), Fla. Stat.;

  • Soliciting A Parent, Legal Guardian, Or Custodian Of A Child For Unlawful Sexual Conduct Using Computer Services Or Devices § 847.0135(3)(b), Fla. Stat.;

  • Traveling to Meet a Minor § 847.0135(4)(a), Fla. Stat.;

  • Traveling to Meet a Minor Facilitated by Parent, Legal Guardian, or Custodian § 847.0135(4)(b), Fla.Stat.;

  • Sexual Misconduct by a Psychotherapist § 491.0112, Fla. Stat.;

  • Sexual Misconduct Between Detention Facility Employees and Inmates § 951.221(1), Fla. Stat.;

  • Transmission of Child Pornography by Electronic Device or Equipment § 847.0137(2) and (3), Fla. Stat.;

  • Transmission of Material Harmful to Minors by Electronic Device or Equipment § 847.0138(2), Fla. Stat.; and

  • Giving Obscene Material to a Minor § 847.0133, Fla. Stat.


Finding a Lawyer for False Allegations of Sex Crimes

If you have been falsely accused of a sex crime in Tampa, Hillsborough County FL, or the surrounding areas of Bartow or Lakeland in Polk County, St. Petersburg or Clearwater in Pinellas County, New Port Richey or Dade City in Pasco County, then contact an experienced and aggressive sex crimes defense attorney at the Sammis Law Firm in Tampa, FL.

Any criminal offense that is sexually motivated comes with a lifetime of consequences including reporting requirements, possible incarceration and sex offender probation.


This article was last updated on Friday, December 8, 2017.

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