Every day the momentum for Chelsea’s Law grows and becomes close to being a reality in California. According to the San Diego Union-Tribune, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has officially stated that he supports the law. Chelsea’s Law is named after Chelsea King, a San Diego girl who was tragically murdered by a registered sex offender. If passed, this law will strengthen and increase the penalties for sex offenses. Any sex crime conviction in California imposes grave consequences upon an individual. But, with Chelsea’s law, the punishments are about to become much more harsh.
Chelsea’s Law increases penalties enforced on sexual predators. It creates a one-strike provision that could lead to life without parole for the most serious of sex crimes. Another provision makes it a misdemeanor for a registered offender to be in a park or a public place where children may be present, without first seeking permission. Assembly Bill 1844 allows punishments for sex crime convictions to be altered depending on the age of the victim and the harm caused.
This law is being proposed to better protect the community from sex offenders. Sadly, it is also likely to penalize those who have been falsely accused or convicted of sex crimes. Just the allegation of a sex crime can sometimes be enough to negatively change the life of the accused. A conviction for any sex crime can lead to fines, the requirement to register as an offender wherever you live, an extensive prison sentence and the stigma of society considering you to be a sexual predator. In any criminal case, there is always room for error. Being wrongfully charged with a sex crime against a minor can ruin you on both a professional and social level.
If you have been accused of a sex crime in California, an experienced Ventura County sex crime defense lawyer at Sitkoff & Hanrahan can help assess your case. Our knowledgeable and skilled defense lawyers know how to aggressively defend our clients. For a free consultation, call 866-430-8383 today. Let us review your case and determine the best way to lessen your charges or have your case dismissed.