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Sex Crime Charges in Nevada County

Sex crimes are taken seriously in Nevada County. Prosecutors often issue the most severe charges and seek the harshest penalties. A Nevada County sex crime defense attorney can help you understand your charges, options, and the legal process involved with a sex crime case.

Sexual Assault and Battery

Under California Penal Code Section 243.4 PC, sexual assault and battery is any non-consensual sexual conduct or behavior involving touching another person’s intimate body parts. Sexual assault and battery is a wobbler offense, meaning it can be charged by the prosecutor as either a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the circumstances of the case.


Under California Penal Code Section 261 PC, rape is non-consensual sexual intercourse with another person. Multiple intimate activities may be charged as rape in California, all of which involve lack of consent or force and sexual intercourse.

Child Pornography

Under California Penal Code Section 311.11 PC, child pornography is illegal. Child pornography is any material, such as images and videos of masturbation, sexual intercourse, or exhibition of the genitals, involving a person under the age of 18. Additionally, the intent of child pornography must be to sexually stimulate the viewer. Thus, medical documents and information would not be considered child pornography.

Child Molestation

Child molestation is defined as sexual acts with a child under the age of 18. This crime is also a wobbler. The child’s age is the determining factor for whether it is charged as a misdemeanor or a felony.

Indecent Exposure

Under California Penal Code Section 314 PC, indecent exposure occurs when a person willfully exposes their genitals or naked body in a public location where other people may be offended or annoyed. This offense is also a wobbler. First-time offenders typically face misdemeanor charges; however, if a person has previous convictions, they may face a felony charge.


Under California Penal Code Section 646.9 PC, stalking involves harassing or threatening someone to the extent that they fear for their safety. Stalking is not considered a sexual offense, but it often accompanies these charges. As a wobbler charge, stalking may be a misdemeanor or a felony.

Prostitution and Solicitation

Prostitution is the act of sexual intercourse or performing a lewd act in exchange for money or other compensation. Solicitation of prostitution involves asking someone else to perform these acts for money or compensation. Under California Penal Code Section 647(b) PC, these crimes are typically misdemeanors.

Penalties for Sex Crimes in Nevada County

Since sex crimes may be misdemeanors or felonies, their criminal penalties vary widely. In many situations, the consequences may depend on the alleged victim’s age, the accused’s criminal history, and other potentially aggravating factors.

Penalties for specific sex crimes include the following:

  • Sexual Assault and Battery: (misdemeanor) six months in jail and a fine of up to $2,000; (felony) up to four years in state prison and a fine of up to $10,000
  • Rape: up to eight years in prison or up to 13 years in prison if the alleged victim is under 18
  • Child Pornography: up to three years in state prison and fines of up to $10,000
  • Child Molestation: (misdemeanor) up to one year in county jail; (felony) up to life in prison
  • Indecent Exposure: (misdemeanor) up to six months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000; (felony) up to three years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000
  • Stalking: (misdemeanor) up to one year in jail or summary probation; (felony) up to five years in prison or formal probation
  • Prostitution and Solicitation: up to six months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000

There are many other consequences for sex crimes, including a tarnished reputation, sex offender registration, and immigration problems, to name a few.

Sex Offender Registration

California requires many people who are convicted of sex crimes to list their names and photographs on the three-tiered sex offender registration system. The tier on which an offender is listed depends on the severity of the offense and the offender’s criminal history.

Tier 1: Requires sex offender registration for 10 years, or five years for minors
Tier 2: Requires sex offender registration for 20 years, or 10 years for minors
Tier 3: Requires lifetime sex offender registration

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Why Hire a Nevada County Sex Crime Lawyer?

Sex crimes charges are extremely serious. You should not deal with them alone. The laws that apply to these cases can be confusing and the penalties vary widely. It’s important to work closely with a Nevada County sex crime attorney who will stand by your side throughout the legal process.

Nevada County sex crimes defense lawyer Chris Walsh is a former prosecutor who now dedicates his career to fighting for those who have been accused of criminal offenses. He knows how prosecutors develop cases against defendants, so he can effectively create defense strategies that work.

Walsh Law will clearly and honestly communicate with you about what you’re facing. We will explain your charges and your legal options. Our Grass Valley sex crime lawyers will do whatever is necessary to clear your name and get your case dismissed or your charges reduced.

Defending Against Sex Crime Charges

The sex offender attorneys at Walsh Law know how to develop defenses that attack the prosecution’s charges against you. We will create a unique defense strategy that addresses the specific facts in your case.
Some of the arguments we may make include:

  • Consent: If the alleged victim consented to the sexual intercourse or sexual touching, then you may not be convicted of a sex crime.
  • Alibi: If you have proof that you were not at the scene of the crime when it was committed, then you may be able to use witness testimony or other evidence to support that you are not the offender.
  • False Identification: You may argue that the alleged victim was confused in identifying you as the offender. We can use DNA evidence, eyewitness testimony, and inconsistencies in the evidence to prove that you were not the perpetrator.
  • Mistake of Fact: If you reasonably believed that the alleged victim consented to the actions or reasonably mistook another fact, then you may not be convicted.

If the alleged victim doesn’t cooperate, will my charges be dropped?

The alleged victim’s cooperation is important, but not determinative. The alleged victim’s testimony is often crucial evidence in sex crimes cases; however, the prosecutor ultimately decides whether to proceed with the charges.

Will I be deported for a sex crime?

Your risk of being deported involves several factors, including your immigration status, the specific sex crime, your legal defense, and the outcome of your case. There are some sex crimes, such as rape, which may result in an automatic deportation. Others may be considered on a case-by-case basis.

What is the difference between rape and sexual assault?

While some people use rape and sexual assault interchangeably, they are different crimes in California. Sexual assault involves non-consensual touching of intimate body parts for sexual arousal or gratification. Rape is non-consensual sexual intercourse with another person. You may be charged with both crimes at once.

Call Walsh Law About Sex Crime Charges in Nevada County

Prosecutors take sex crimes seriously in Nevada County. They will often issue the highest charge possible and seek the harshest consequences. It’s important to find a Nevada County sex crime lawyer who understands your situation and will work hard to protect you. Former prosecutor Chris Walsh knows how the state works in these cases, and he is now dedicated to helping people like you.

Call Walsh Law to speak with one of our sex crime attorneys at (530) 499-0645 or use our online contact form to schedule a free consultation today.

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