Being charged with a sex crime in Colorado can be a scary experience. After all, sex crimes are serious. If found guilty of a sex crime, it can change your life forever.
During these times of uncertainty, you need an attorney on your side. Our attorneys will help you look at the situation without fear and to address the charges against you rationally and within the context of the law. That’s how an experienced attorney can work with you to create a robust defense against these charges.
Every case is different due to the unique circumstances surrounding it. Attorneys who have helped clients defend themselves against sex crimes in court understand the different types of defenses. Here are a few of the most common defense tactics that may help you win the case.
Central to almost every sex crime case is the idea of consent. Sometimes, it’s prudent to claim that the victim consented to the sexual act. This effective defense in a case must show that the victim acted of their own will and agreed to the events.
Under the law, consent is when a person’s cooperation in an act or attitude displays they have acted of their own free will with knowledge of their actions. Being in a prior or current relationship with the victim does not constitute consent in the eyes of the law.
If you have evidence that the victim freely consented to the act and understood what they agreed to, share it with your attorney. It may be the cornerstone of an excellent defense strategy.
A mistake-of-fact defense is another common tactic, but it can be challenging to prove. In sex crimes cases such as those involving sexual assault, mistake-of-fact means that the accused mistakenly believed the victim consented to the act.
Remember, not only are you attempting to defend yourself against charges, but the prosecution is also attempting to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you perpetrated the crime. To do this, they must demonstrate specific elements. If you can cast doubt whether or not you believed the victim consented to the act, that can cast doubt on these elements and help you go free.
Statute of Limitations
Under the law, crimes are prosecuted for a certain number of years. Sex offenses typically have their statute of limitations. This law indicates how much time can pass for someone to prosecute an individual for their crimes.
In most felony sex crime cases, the government only has ten years to prosecute someone for the crime. For victims 18 and under, the statute of limitations begins after they have turned 18. The incident must have also occurred within ten years. For misdemeanor sex crimes, the statute of limitations is even less time – about five years. In some cases, however, it may be as little as 18 months.
If the statute of limitations has run out on a crime you are accused of, an attorney can use that to have the entire case against you dismissed.
About the Author:
Kimberly Diego is a criminal defense attorney in Denver practicing at The Law Office of Kimberly Diego. She obtained her undergraduate degree from Georgetown University and her law degree at the University of Colorado. She was named one of Super Lawyers’ “Rising Stars of 2012 & 2019-2022” and a “Top 100 Trial Lawyers in Colorado” for 2012-2022 by The National Trial Lawyers. Both honors are limited to a small percentage of practicing attorneys in each state. Additionally, Expertise names her to its lists of the 25 Best Denver DUI Lawyers and 21 Best Denver Criminal Defense Lawyers, both in 2020-2022. Ms. Diego has also been recognized for her work in domestic violence cases.