Lawyer for Sex Offenses | Noblesville, Carmel, Indianapolis

Sex offense charges are serious. If you or a family member has been charged with a sex crime, it is very important to immediately retain an experienced criminal defense attorney who has represented clients against these charges.

Our attorneys have successfully won jury trials for Rape, Child Molestation, and Performing Sexual acts in front of minors.  We have also successfully reached agreements that have resulted in these types of charges being dismissed.

We Would Invite You to Call Us Immediately if You Have Been Charged with a Sex Crime.

The sooner we are retained, the sooner we can begin mounting a vigorous defense, starting with uncovering the full set of facts relating to these charges (including exculpatory facts and evidence).

Sex Crimes are Fact Sensitive

They require an attorney with experience in reviewing forensic evidence, medical reports, and taking depositions of witnesses or alleged victims.  Sex crime cases will also often involve various police agencies, Department of Child Services, or a sex crime advocate.

Understanding the Categories of Sex Crimes in Indiana

What Constitutes Rape, and the Felony Classifications

Rape in Indiana is defined in Indiana Code § 35-42-4-1.  This section provides that a person who knowingly or intentionally has sexual intercourse with another person or knowingly or intentionally causes another person to perform or submit to other sexual conduct when: (1) the other person is compelled by force or imminent threat of force; (2) the other person is unaware that the sexual intercourse or other sexual conduct is occurring; or (3) the other person is so mentally disabled or deficient that consent to sexual intercourse or other sexual conduct) cannot be given; commits rape, a Level 3 felony.

However, Rape can also be a Level 1 Felony.  It is a level 1 felony when  (1) it is committed by using or threatening the use of deadly force; (2) it is committed while armed with a deadly weapon; (3) it results in serious bodily injury to a person other than a defendant; or (4) the commission of the offense is facilitated by furnishing the victim, without the victim’s knowledge, with a drug  or a controlled substance or knowing that the victim was furnished with the drug or controlled substance without the victim’s knowledge.

Child Molestation

Child Molestation is defined in Indiana Code § 35-42-4-3.  This section provides that a person who, with a child under fourteen (14) years of age, knowingly or intentionally performs or submits to sexual intercourse or other sexual conduct commits child molesting, a Level 3 felony.

However, such offense is a Level 1 felony if: (1) it is committed by a person at least twenty-one (21) years of age; (2) it is committed by using or threatening the use of deadly force or while armed with a deadly weapon; (3) it results in serious bodily injury; (4) the commission of the offense is facilitated by furnishing the victim, without the victim’s knowledge, with a drug or a controlled substance or knowing that the victim was furnished with the drug or controlled substance without the victim’s knowledge; or (5) it results in the transmission of a dangerous sexually transmitted disease and the person knew that the person was infected with the disease.

Child Molestation also occurs where a person who, with a child under fourteen (14) years of age, performs or submits to any fondling or touching, of either the child or the older person, with intent to arouse or to satisfy the sexual desires of either the child or the older person, commits child molesting, a Level 4 felony. However, the offense is a Level 2 felony if: (1) it is committed by using or threatening the use of deadly force; (2) it is committed while armed with a deadly weapon; or (3) the commission of the offense is facilitated by furnishing the victim, without the victim’s knowledge, with a drug or a controlled substance or knowing that the victim was furnished with the drug or controlled substance without the victim’s knowledge.

Common defenses in child molestation include the defense of being factually innocent.   Another defense allowed by statute, is that the accused person reasonably believed that the child was sixteen (16) years of age or older at the time of the conduct.

Sexual Misconduct with a Minor

Sexual Misconduct with a Minor is also a common sex offense.  The statute that governs it can be found at Indiana Code 35-42-4-9, which provides that  Sexual Misconduct with a Minor occurs where a person at least eighteen (18) years of age who, with a child at least fourteen (14) years of age but less than sixteen (16) years of age, performs or submits to sexual intercourse or other sexual conduct.  A violation of this statue is usually charged as a Level 5 felony.

However, the offense is a Level 4 felony if it is committed by a person at least twenty-one (21) years of age; and a Level 1 felony if it is committed by using or threatening the use of deadly force, if it is committed while armed with a deadly weapon, if it results in serious bodily injury, or if the commission of the offense is facilitated by furnishing the victim, without the victim’s knowledge, with a drug or a controlled substance or knowing that the victim was furnished with the drug or controlled substance without the victim’s knowledge.

Sexual Misconduct with a Minor as a Level 6 Felony can also occur where a person at least eighteen (18) years of age who, with a child at least fourteen (14) years of age but less than sixteen (16) years of age, performs or submits to any fondling or touching, of either the child or the older person, with intent to arouse or to satisfy the sexual desires of either the child or the older person. However, the offense is a Level 5 felony if it is committed by a person at least twenty-one (21) years of age.

The offense is a Level 2 felony if it is committed by using or threatening the use of deadly force, while armed with a deadly weapon, or if the commission of the offense is facilitated by furnishing the victim, without the victim’s knowledge, with a drug or a controlled substance) or knowing that the victim was furnished with the drug or controlled substance without the victim’s knowledge.

Defenses to Sexual Misconduct with a Minor Cases

There are some special defenses to a Sexual Misconduct with a Minor case.  The statute provides that it may be a defense that the accused person reasonably believed that the child was at least sixteen (16) years of age at the time of the conduct. It may be a defense that the child is or has ever been married.

It may also be a defense to a prosecution under this section if all the following apply:

(1) The person is not more than four (4) years older than the victim. (2) The relationship between the person and the victim was a dating relationship or an ongoing personal relationship. The term “ongoing personal relationship” does not include a family relationship. (3) The crime: (A) was not committed by a person who is at least twenty-one (21) years of age; (B) was not committed by using or threatening the use of deadly force; (C) was not committed while armed with a deadly weapon; (D) did not result in serious bodily injury; (E) was not facilitated by furnishing the victim, without the victim’s knowledge, with a drug  or knowing that the victim was furnished with the drug or controlled substance without the victim’s knowledge; and (F) was not committed by a person having a position of authority or substantial influence over the victim. (4) The person has not committed another sex offense (as defined in IC 11-8-8-5.2) (including a delinquent act that would be a sex offense if committed by an adult) against any other person.

Where are Sex Crimes Cases Heard in Hamilton County, Indiana?

The county seat of Hamilton County is Noblesville, and sex offenses are typically adjudicated in Hamilton County Superior Court #1, 2, 3 or Circuit Court.

Our office is just a block away from these courts, which allows not only quick access to such courts, but also to the prosecutor’s office, with whom we will be interacting in the defense of our clients charged with sex offenses and other crimes.

We Offer a Free Consultation So that You Can Learn About Your Rights and How We Can Help

Sex crime charges require a vigorous and tenacious defense, particularly because of the long-term ramifications that can result.  We stand ready to represent you and your reputation aggressively against charges, or if you feel that you may be under investigation.

Call Dollard Evans & Whalin For Your Free Criminal Defense Consultation to learn how we can help.