A sexual assault charge may have lifelong consequences


If charged with a sex crime, your future may be at stake

Being charged with a sex crime is a serious matter that should not be taken lightly. If convicted you may face considerable penalties and prison time. However, the consequences go beyond prison time. Even if the allegations are false, when sex crimes are involved, you can also face social stigma that may impact all facets of your life. Society’s negative feelings regarding sex-related offenses and treatment of people who have been charged with these crimes, even if not convicted, can destroy reputations and lives.

Consequently, if you are accused of a sexually-based criminal offense, it is important to understand the charges against you, the associated penalties you could face and to have a criminal defense attorney on your side to protect your rights.

In Nevada, there are various types of sex crimes. Some offenses include sexual assault, sexual battery, rape, child pornography, open and gross lewdness, sex trafficking and failure to register as a sex offender. There are different penalties depending on the offense charged, in this article we will focus on sexual assault.

Sexual assault and associated penalties

Under Nevada law, sexual assault is defined as when a person, “subjects another person to sexual penetration, or who forces another person to make a sexual penetration on himself or herself or another, or on a beast, against the will of the victim or under conditions in which the perpetrator knows or should know that the victim is mentally or physically incapable of resisting or understanding the nature of his or her conduct.” (NRS 200.366)

This means that it is illegal to have sexual contact with a person who does not consent or is unable to consent to the act. A person may be unable to consent if he or she does not have the ability to understand what is occurring, which may be due to mental capacity issues or inebriation (in many cases a drunk individual may not have legal capacity to consent to having sex).

If convicted of sexual assault in Nevada, the severity of the penalties depends on the degree of harm suffered by the accuser. Namely, if the accuser suffered substantial bodily harm, the accused may face 15 years in prison, with a maximum sentence of life in prison (both without parole). If there was not substantial harm suffered, the sentence may be 10 years in prison, with a maximum sentence of life in prison (both with a possibility of parole). (NRA 200.366(a)(b)). The consequences associated with a sexual assault conviction are severe and life changing.

Consequences beyond prison

If charged with a crime it is natural to worry about penalties or prison time. When it is a sex crime offense, like sexual assault, you must also be concerned with being required to register as a sex offender for the rest of your life. This means that very personal information about you will be available to the public, including your name, picture, address and the charges that were made against you. There will be limits on where you can live and work, affecting your future ability to get a job and obtain housing.

If you are required to register and do not do so within a certain amount of time, you may be charged with a felony offense for failure to register. If found guilty, the penalties for a first offense could be fines up to $5,000 and a maximum of 4 years in prison. Penalties increase with the number of offenses.

Talk to a lawyer first

Due to the serious nature of sex-related crimes, if you are charged with an offense your first step should be to contact an attorney. At The Law Offices of Benjamin Nadig, Chtd., your case will be investigated and a defense will be prepared on your behalf. Call 702-545-6419 for a free consultation and start protecting your rights.