An arrest or allegation of a sex crime in Colorado can upend a defendant’s life. Strict, long-lasting penalties exist for a conviction and the presumption of guilt couldn’t be greater. However, a charge of sexual assault or unlawful sexual contact can be difficult to prove in some cases. At Sawyer Legal Group, our experienced Colorado sex crimes defense lawyers are prepared to fight for the best possible outcome for our clients. Whether negotiating for a reasonable plea deal, arguing for a dismissal, or taking a case to trial, our representation and reputation speaks for itself throughout Colorado courtrooms.
Sexual Assault vs Sexual Contact in Colorado
These terms are often widely misunderstood when it comes to Colorado’s legal system. Sexual assault is a crime that involves nonconsensual (due to age, difference in age, or lack of consent) penetration or intrusion. Rape, oral sex without consent, and unwanted penetration with a foreign object are examples of sexual assault in Denver, Colorado Springs, and Aurora.
Sexual contact crimes involve slightly less invasive actions, usually including the unwanted groping, fondling, or touching of someone’s intimate body parts. If the victim in a sexual contact case (or sex assault case) is 17 years old or younger, Colorado’s laws surrounding age of consent, position of trust, and sexual assault on a child come into play.
Common Penalties for Colorado Sex Crimes
Sexual assault offenses in Arapahoe, Denver, and Jefferson County are extraordinary risk felonies, substantially increasing sentencing ranges. Generally speaking a conviction for sexual assault can lead to:
- a prison sentence of a few years to over a decade,
- fines of up to $750K,
- sex offender registration,
- mandatory evaluation / treatment,
- strict community supervision
Aggravating factors such as the age of the victim, use of force, and defendant’s criminal background can send the prison sentence soaring. Additionally, many Colorado sex crimes are subject to indeterminate prison / probation sentencing where the defendant faces a minimum amount of incarceration / supervision with no maximum. Some similar penalties exist for possession, distribution, or creation of child pornography.
An unlawful sexual contact crime that doesn’t involve a juvenile victim is often a class 1 misdemeanor. While this contact offense can require sex offender registration alongside supervision / treatment, the county jail sentence is a maximum of 364 days.
How to Fight a Colorado Sex Crime Charge
Creating a strong defense to sex crime charges in Colorado starts with contacting Sawyer Legal Group. The earlier a defendant does this, the better. Prosecutors have nearly endless resources at their disposal in sex cases, including some victim advocates whose aim is to see a defendant punished as severely as possible before they’re even proven guilty.
Perhaps sex or sexual contact never occurred, the alleged victim consented, or exaggerations are being made of what actually happened. Nevertheless, contact our office today for a free, confidential consultation. We can speak with those contacted by police, accused by another, or being held in county jails. Our highly-rated criminal lawyers will carefully review your situation, answer your questions, and outline productive next steps in your defense.
Don’t talk to police about sex crime allegations – talk to us. 303-731-0719
Photo by Ron Lach