What should I do if I have been falsely accused of a sex crime?
By Nathaniel Pitoniak on March 26th, 2021 in
While being charged with any crime can result in significant anxiety and stress, being falsely accused of a Houston sex crime brings its own set of concerns. Being convicted of a sex crime can have life-altering consequences, especially when you factor in jail or prison, fines, probation, and the necessity of registering as a sex offender. According to AP News, while it is generally believed the rate of false accusations of a sex crime lie somewhere between two and ten percent, one academic study showed that as many as 40 percent of sexual assault charges were false.
Obviously, sex crimes are serious, and perpetrators should be held accountable, but false accusations can also destroy lives. If you have been charged with a Houston sex crime, it is imperative that you immediately contact attorney Nathaniel Pitoniak. The sooner you make this call, the better likelihood you stand of having your charges dismissed or receiving a not guilty verdict.
Why Would a Person Make False Accusations of a Sex Crime?
It is difficult to understand why anyone would make allegations of a sex crime that were not true, but it can and does happen. In some cases, when the perpetrator is not known to the accuser, there could simply be a case of mistaken identity. Sex crimes often happen in dimly lit areas, and the accuser could genuinely believe you are the perpetrator. Other times, the accuser could have been under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and, again, made a false identification.
In the case of “date rape,”—a serious crime—the accuser may have initially consented to sex, then in the cold light of day, regretted that decision, so they made false accusations. False accusations of sex crimes are sometimes a way of getting what the accuser wants from a spouse or significant other. Perhaps a child custody case is not going in the accuser’s favor, or the accuser wants a larger share of marital property. Allegations of sexual assault, rape, sexual assault of a child, and others could give the accuser leverage to get what he or she wants.
Dealing with False Accusations of a Sex Crime
If you have been falsely accused of a sex crime, it is vitally important that you act quickly and decisively to protect yourself by doing the following:
- Immediately contact a Houston criminal defense attorney who has experience in sex crimes.
- Never, ever speak to the police. Of course, you are outraged at the allegations—with good reason—but it is critical that you not provide any information to law enforcement that can be misconstrued or taken out of context.
- Keep a written record regarding the timeline of events leading up to the alleged incident. No detail is too small and could be extremely important down the line.
- If there were witnesses to the alleged incident, or if you were with others at the time of the alleged incident, write down names and contact information.
- Don’t contact your accuser. While it is normal to want to speak to your accuser to find out why he or she is falsely accusing you—do not succumb to the temptation.
- Do not discuss your case with others, stay off of social media, and watch what you say and do until your attorney has secured a favorable outcome.
Getting Help from the Law Office of Nathaniel Pitoniak
This can be a very unsettling time in your life. Even the hint of a sex crime can have far-reaching repercussions. Having an experienced Houston sex crimes attorney in your corner can help you get through it with your rights and future protected. Nathaniel Pitoniak will fully develop a defense, based on the facts of your case, fighting for a dismissal or reduction in the charges you face. Contact the Law Office of Nathaniel Pitoniak today!