False Accusations of Child Sexual Abuse: What Should You Do?
Accusations of child sexual abuse are treated seriously, given the disturbing nature of this crime. However, not everyone accused of this crime is guilty. False accusations can either be intentionally made or based on misunderstanding and error. Either way, it puts the accused individual in a predicament and it is crucial to know how to navigate these circumstances if you find yourself being falsely accused of this terrible crime.
How Should I Proceed?
Accusations of child sexual abuse usually lead to criminal investigations, referrals to a child welfare or protection agency, and may result in criminal charges. Your initial response to these accusations will have a significant impact on how the rest of this case unfolds, so consider your actions carefully.
Avoid Making Statements
If you are questioned about these false allegations, whether by someone you know, a law enforcement officer, or an investigator, try not to make any statements, provide answers, or engage in a conversation with someone until you have conferred with your lawyer. You are innocent and likely eager to deny these accusations, but simply denying them is not as straightforward as you might think. Without legal advice, your simple statement of denial can be misinterpreted and twisted to make you appear guilty.
If questioned by an employer, or someone from human services, and you are worried that your job may be in jeopardy if you do not answer their questions, try to exercise your best judgment in the absence of an attorney.
Seek Legal Representation Immediately
As soon as you are aware of accusations regarding child sexual abuse, you should reach out to an attorney for advice. This communication is confidential, so you will not have to worry about your words being misinterpreted to your detriment. In addition to the advice you receive, an attorney can also begin to communicate on your behalf should anyone try to question you.
Steps You Should Take
After you have sought legal counsel, there are other important steps you should take if you are falsely accused of inappropriate sexual behavior with a child. This includes:
- Gathering and preserving any physical evidence you might have that relates to the alleged victim
- Gathering and preserving documents or records that relate to the accusations that might reveal where you were at the time of the incident, which may vindicate your denial of the accusations
- Produce a list of possible witnesses
Share all of this information with your attorney as it will help him or her strengthen your case.
A conviction fir sexual contact or abuse of a minor yields some potentially severe consequences, including:
- Jail or prison sentence
- Probation for an extended period
- Mandatory registration as a sex offender
These convictions often come with penalties that go beyond criminal consequences. You could also lose your job, professional license, or face a civil lawsuit. If the case draws media attention, this could also have a terrible impact on your life outside of the courtroom.
Dallas Sex Crimes Attorneys
If you have been accused of sexual abuse involving a child, it is imperative that you seek skilled and experienced legal representation as soon as possible. At Crain Lewis Brogdon, LLP, our Dallas sex crimes attorneys will provide a strong, intelligent defense for those who have been wrongfully charged with a sex crime in Texas. We understand that these cases are never truly black and white and will dedicate ourselves to ensuring your side of the story is heard in court.
Call our office for an aggressive ally in your corner at (214) 301-5007. We provide free initial consultations.