Sex Crimes Lawyers Maryland | Sex Crime Defense Attorney Maryland

In Maryland, conviction of a sexual crime has severe consequences. Even when a conviction leads to a relatively short prison term, there are lasting impacts. The mark of a sexual assault charge on your permanent record will show up in most background checks and can make it incredibly difficult to secure employment, housing, and even a loan. Many times a conviction will result in a felony charge along with a prison sentence that can extend from ten years to life. A sexual crime includes but is not limited to sexual acts with a minor, a person who was mentally incapacitated (for example, under the influence of drugs or narcotics), or unwilling to engage in the sexual act. On this page, we will outline some of the most common sexual assault charges and explain how the state of Maryland treats each one.

Rape: First Degree

According to Maryland Criminal Law, rape in the first degree is described as engaging in an illegal act involving vaginal intercourse by force, the threat of force, or without consent while doing one or more of the acts listed below:

  • Disfiguring, strangling, suffocating or otherwise inflicting serious physical injury to the victim or another individual in commission of the crime
  • Displaying or employing a dangerous weapon or other object the victim believes to be a dangerous weapon
  • Threatening to kidnap, seriously injure, disfigure, strangle, suffocate or kill the victim
  • Committing the crime while also committing first, second or third degree burglary
  • Committing the crime with the help of another individual

In the case of conviction of a first degree rape, the penalties are strict and include a felony charge and prison sentence that can extend to life without chance of parole. The age of the victim can impact the prison term, if the victim is under the age of 16, the result will be life in prison without the option of parole.

Rape: Second Degree

Rape in the second degree states that an individual is prohibited from engaging in vaginal intercourse with another individual under these circumstances:

  • By the use of force, the threat of force, or without the other individual’s consent
  • If the victim is younger than 13, or the offender is 18 years or older
  • If the offender has knowledge that the alleged victim is mentally incapacitated, mentally defective or physically helpless
  • The punishment for a guilty plea of second degree rape includes a felony conviction and a prison sentence up to 20 years. For younger victims, the penalty is a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years in jail and can extend up to life in prison.

Sexual Offense

Outside of the category of rape crimes that are mostly defined by the act of vaginal intercourse, a sexual offense crime encompasses the acts classified as sexual assault (such as anal intercourse, sexual penetration with an object, and any act that is deemed as sexual arousal or gratification that results in abuse of another party involved). The degree of offense determines the penalty assigned by the state.

Sexual Offense: First Degree

The penalty for a first degree sexual offense is a felony conviction and a prison sentence that can range from 15 years to life in prison depending on the severity of the crime committed. Depending on the age of the victim, the punishment can be extended. The classification of a first degree sexual offense states that it is illegal to engage in any sexual act with another person by force or intimidation, without the consent of that individual while performing one of the following behaviors:

Displaying or employing a dangerous weapon or other object the victim believes to be a dangerous weapon

  • Disfiguring, strangling, suffocating or otherwise inflicting serious physical injury to the victim or another individual in commission of the crime
  • Threatening to kidnap, seriously injure, disfigure, strangle, suffocate or kill the victim
  • Committing the crime with help from another individual
  • Committing the crime while also committing first, second or third degree burglary

Sexual Offense: Second Degree

In the case that an individual attempts a sexual act with a person who they know is mentally incapacitated or impaired, or physically helpless, this is a second degree sexual offense. Additionally, this charge applies to a victim who is 13 years or younger who was involved in a sexual act with someone 18 years or older. The punishment for such an offense is up to 15 year in prison without the option of parole.

Child Sexual Abuse

In Maryland, you will find that some of the most harsh punishments are assigned to those who are found guilty of sex crimes involving children. The penalties are especially harsh for the parent or legal guardian of the child, this is considered a first degree assault and a conviction often results in a felony charge and up to 25 years in prison).

Maryland Sex Offender Registry

Regardless of the extent of the charge, in the event of a conviction for a sex crime, the offender will be required to register on the sex offender list for Maryland within three days of their conviction. This is a public record that lists the name of the guilty party and the crime that they have been convicted of. Depending on the severity of the crime, your name will be on this list from a minimum of 15 years (Tier 1 conviction) to life (Tier 3 conviction). Failure to register can result in a fine of up to $5,000 or up to three years in prison.

Maryland Sexual Crime Defense Lawyer

If you have been charged or believe that you will be charged with a sexual crime in the state of Maryland, having an aggressive, experienced legal team to aid in your defense is of immeasurable value. Having a sexual offense charge on your permanent record can negatively impact your future in many ways. It is important to obtain an expert criminal defense attorney who understands how to navigate your case. The team at Alpert Schreyer believes that every person has the right to a thorough and vigorous defense. We will work tirelessly on your behalf, so call us now at (866) 444-6363 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation.