Understanding sex crimes investigations in Florida

Nearly every day, there will be stories in the news about a person being accused of a sex crime. Often, the report will include some information about the case, and it might seem like the person arrested is clearly guilty of the offense. It is important to realize that those charged with these crimes are able to have an opportunity to present their side of the story.

Many individuals arrested for sex crimes are caught due to stings set up by law enforcement, either in person with officers working undercover, or by investigators using the Internet. Police departments may place ads on various websites where prostitutes frequently offer their services. When a person responds to the ad, the officers set up a time and location for the encounter to take place, which usually leads to an arrest.

Some law enforcement agencies will also use social media sites to try to catch offenders. They will initiate conversations with other individuals, posing as underage children. If an individual requests or sends illicit photos to what he or she expects to be a child, the officers will have what they need to make an arrest.

File-sharing websites are another place where law enforcement investigates some of these kinds of crimes. Several departments have trained officers on how individuals will trade images or videos of child pornography. The police will know file names connected to certain items, and they can see who has downloaded or shared an item with a particular title.

If an individual is arrested, it is possible that state or federal charges may be pursued, depending upon the crime that was committed. The offender can expect to receive extensive prison time if convicted.

In addition to these penalties, most of these individuals will be required to register as a sex offender. Florida has several basic requirements in place, and some cities within the state have placed additional restrictions on these offenders. They make it much more difficult for certain sex offenders to live close to schools or parks, which can increase the challenges these offenders face when trying to readjust to society.

Some individuals may discover that they are the subject of an active sex crimes investigation by law enforcement. If you learn that you are a suspect, or you have been arrested for committing a sex crime, you should contact an experienced criminal defense attorney before you discuss anything with police or prosecutors.

Your attorney can be at your side throughout any interactions with law enforcement, and also begin preparing an aggressive defense to the accusations. This will help you protect yourself from making any statements that could lead to a conviction.

It is important that you understand that options are available to you, no matter what charges you are facing. It will be necessary to review your entire case to determine what will be best for your specific situation.