Johnson County Indecent Liberties Lawyer

It is a serious criminal offense to engage in sexual intercourse or lewd fondling of a child (or causing the child to engage in lewd fondling with another).  The State will prosecute such acts as an aggravated indecent liberties offense.  Depending upon the conduct alleged and the age of those involved, an aggravated indecent liberties charge could include penalties of up to life imprisonment and mandatory sex offender registration.

If you’ve been accused, arrested, or charged with an aggravated indecent liberties offense or any other sex crime, you are likely feeling overwhelmed.  Criminal litigation involving sex offenses often holds your family, livelihood and freedom in the balance. 

It’s important to note that you do have options.  With the assistance of a skilled Johnson County indecent liberties lawyer, you can put forth a solid defense that emphasizes the weaknesses of the prosecution’s arguments and undermines the credibility of the accusations at issue.

So, how does an aggravated indecent liberties offense work?  Let’s take a look.

Understanding the Aggravated Indecent Liberties Offense

Section 21-3504 of the Kansas Code defines and elaborates on the aggravated indecent liberties with a child offense.  According to statutory law, a defendant may be convicted of aggravated indecent liberties with a child if they:

  1. Engage in sexual intercourse with a child who is 14 or more years of age but less than 16 years of age;
  2. Engage in any of the following acts with a child who is 14 or more years of age but less than 16 years of age and who does not consent to:
    1. i) Any lewd fondling, done with the intent to arouse or satisfy the sexual desires of either the child or the offender, or
    2. ii) Causing the child to engage in any lewd fondling of another with the intent to arouse or satisfy the sexual desires of the child, the offender, or another.
  3. Engage in any of the following acts with a child who is under 14 years of age:
    1. i) Any lewd fondling, done with the intent to arouse or satisfy the sexual desires of either the child or the offender, or
    2. ii) Causing the child to engage in any lewd fondling of another with the intent to arouse or satisfy the sexual desires of the child, the offender, or another.

Kansas uses a sentencing grid as a guideline for non-drug offenses.

Aggravated indecent liberties with a child as described by (a) and (c) above is a level 3 person felony, punishable by up to 247 months of imprisonment, depending upon criminal history. Aggravated indecent liberties with a child as described by (b) above is a level 4 person felony, punishable by up to 172 months of imprisonment, depending upon criminal history. If the offender is 18 years of age or older, the offense described by (c) above (including attempt) is prosecuted as an off-grid person felony known as Jessica’s Law, and carries a mandatory punishable by a life sentence without the possibility of parole for 25 years.  All forms of the offense require mandatory registration as a sex offender.

Defending Against an Aggravated Indecent Liberties Charge

In defending against an aggravated indecent liberties charge, the strategies applicable to the case will vary depending on the age of the victim and the circumstances which led to charges being filed. 

Under Kansas law individuals under the age of sixteen cannot consent to sexual activity which can include anything from sexual intercourse to simply sexual (or lewd) touching.  An aggravated indecent liberties charge can encompass any allegation of sexual behavior regardless of whether there is an accusation of forcible behavior.  The accused’s intent and accuser’s credibility are always central issues when sex charges are filed.  It is vital that you ensure your attorney has a clear understanding of the nature of the relationship and the circumstances of the allegation to develop the best possible defense. 

At times, people make mistakes and there is overwhelming evidence of their guilt.  It is still vital to explore every possible defense and trial strategy to ensure all options are explored.  However, it can be of equal importance to begin taking remedial measures such as obtaining evaluations and counseling to ensure you obtain the best possible result under the circumstances.  Jerry can ensure you are taking every step to build the best possible defense if you ultimately decide to have a trial, while also taking steps to put yourself in the best negotiating position. 

Contact an Experienced Johnson County Indecent Liberties Lawyer for Guidance

If you’ve been charged with having committed a sexual offense — including aggravated indecent liberties with a child — you may be exposed to severe criminal penalties that include decades of imprisonment, as well as mandatory registration as a sex offender.  It’s important that you get in touch with a skilled Johnson County indecent liberties lawyer for comprehensive assistance with your defense.

I’m Jerry Merrill, an attorney with extensive experience on both sides of criminal litigation.  Prior to my current role as a criminal defense attorney in Johnson County, I worked as a prosecutor for the State.  This unique background has given me a great deal of insight into effectively navigating a challenging criminal dispute, including those that involve sex offenses such as aggravated indecent liberties.  I understand the strategies employed by prosecutors, and the steps necessary to put you on an even playing field — and take decisive action to give you an advantage.

Sex crime accusations can be crippling in myriad ways — socially, psychologically, and even financially.  The stigma of a sex offense can be difficult to overcome, even if you’ve been deemed innocent.  I believe that this emotionally challenging time demands expert, client-focused legal assistance.  It’s important that my clients feel comfortable, safe, and well-represented.  I provide my personal phone number and encourage clients to communicate whenever they have a question or concern that they’d like to discuss.

Call 913-381-2085 to schedule a free and confidential consultation.

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Merrill Law Firm

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7211 West 98th Terrace, Building 4, Suite 140
Overland Park, Kansas 66212

T. 913-381-2085 | F. 913-341-1130

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