Almost every state has prostitution laws that make it illegal to exchange money for sexual services. New York state has laws against prostitution, or selling sexual services, as well as solicitation, which is attempting to buy them. Being convicted of one of these crimes can have a long term impact on one’s life
What Qualifies as Prostitution or Solicitation?
People do not have to be “caught in the act” in order to be charged with solicitation or prostitution. In some cases, people are arrested for interacting with an undercover policeman and appearing to be trying to buy or sell sexual services. In other cases, people are charged merely because they are at the wrong place at the wrong time. For instance, one may be in a neighborhood where prostitution occurs while dressed in a risque manner or carrying cash. Police often make assumptions that are incorrect or fail to respect a suspect’s rights.
Not all people who are charged with solicitation or prostitution are guilty. Others may technically be guilty but should be found innocent because the state has failed to follow established procedures. Our laws demand that all people be treated as innocent until the courts find them guilty; our laws also dictate that police and district attorneys follow procedures that protect the constitutional rights of the accused.
The Impact of Solicitation and Prostitution Charges
Being convicted of prostitution or solicitation can change a person’s life in a very negative way. This conviction will be on one’s criminal record and have to be disclosed when applying for jobs or professional licenses. This can interfere immensely with your ability to earn a living.
In addition, being convicted of a crime involving sex can have disastrous effects on one’s personal life. Many people suffer problems in their marriage, with child custody, and in their friendships and family relationships. The legal penalties can be heavy as well, including fines, mandatory classes, probation, or even time behind bars. However, there is hope for people who are accused of prostitution or solicitation. In many cases, an experienced criminal lawyer can help.
How a Lawyer Can Help
A lawyer who has experience in prostitution and solicitation knows the courts in the area and what strategies have gotten defendant’s charges dropped or reduced in the past. In many cases, a lawyer can get the charges against you reduced to less embarrassing crimes. An attorney also can ensure that the prosecution follows the established procedures laws regarding the defendant’s rights. If the arrest and/or investigation was not conducted well, a lawyer can get the charges dropped completely or convince judges and juries to find the defendant innocent.
In addition, a criminal defense lawyer has the experience needed to determine whether a person should accept a plea bargain or go to trial. They have handled hundreds of cases just like yours and seen the outcomes. You deserve advice from an experienced person when making important decisions that will affect the rest of your life.
Offering Help and Hope
Because solicitation and prostitution convictions can have devastating lifelong effects even beyond the legal punishments, it is very important to get help. Hiring a lawyer is the first step toward reclaiming your life and reducing the damage of these charges.
Being charged with a crime is a frightening and stressful experience that can affect the rest of your life. However, there is no need to go through this alone. An experienced criminal defense lawyer is the advocate that you need in order to get through this time. Don’t let a single incident ruin your life; get the legal help you need today.