Our client was charged with two counts of lewd and lascivious molestation of a child.
Lewd and Lascivious Molestation of a Child in Florida
Under Florida law, lewd and lascivious molestation of a child occurs when an adult intentionally touches the genitals, breasts, or buttocks of a child that is younger than 16 years of age. This can also be charged when an individual forces or encourages a child younger than 16 years of age to touch another individual in a lewd or lascivious manner.
Lewd or lascivious manners are defined as wicked, lustful, unchaste, or sensual intent.
Penalties For Lewd and Lascivious Molestation of a Child
Penalties for lewd and lascivious molestation of a child can be very severe. A person can be charged with first, second, or third-degree felony depending upon the circumstances of the incident.
A first-degree felony will be charged if the offender is over the age of 18 and the victim was under the age of 12. The offender will receive a minimum of 25 years in prison.
A second-degree felony will be charged if the offender is younger than 18, and the victim is younger than 12. A second-degree charge will also result if the offender is over the age of 18 and the victim is between 12 and 16. A maximum of 15 years will be spent in prison.
A third-degree felony results when the offender is younger than 18 and the victim is between the ages of 12 and 16. This will result in between 3 to 15 years of prison time.
Defenses For Lewd and Lascivious Molestation of a Child
Defenses that can be used for lewd and lascivious molestation of a child are false allegations and lack of lewd intent.
False allegations are often made when the victim is jealous of the said molester. They could be made due to a mental illness of the said victim, or perhaps a mentally ill parent is influencing the said victim. A false allegation could also be made when an angry parent manipulates the child.
A defense of lack of lewd intent could be used if there is no shown intent when engaged in contact.
In Florida, as lewd and lascivious molestation of a child is a strict liability crime, the following defenses cannot be used: consent, ignorance of the child’s age, or proximity in age.
Retaining Legal Services
If you have been charged with lewd and lascivious molestation of a child, legal services should be retained to fight for your rights. An experienced attorney will be able to advise you on what course of action should be taken, and will be able to negotiate with the prosecution.
At Musca Law Firm, we have successfully handled many cases similar to this. We will fight for your rights and use the proper defenses to help reduce or completely drop charges against you. We do offer a free consultation and are available 24 hours per day.
RESULTS: Our client retained the legal services of Musca Law Firm. After negotiations with the prosecution, we were able to have both of his charges dismissed!