People do not have to be convicted of indecency with a child to face consequences for the allegations. In many cases, people will find that some of the individuals closest to them such as family members or co-workers have taken unfavorable views of them simply for being accused of this crime.
The truth remains that you are entitled to a presumption of innocence whenever you enter a courtroom. The prosecutor bears the burden of proving your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, the highest legal standard.
If you or your loved one were arrested for alleged indecency with a child in the Fort Worth area, do not wait to find yourself legal representation. The Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy defends clients all over Tarrant County.
Our firm can fight to possibly get your criminal charges reduced or dismissed. We can examine your case as soon as you call (817) 422-5350 or contact us online to take advantage of a free consultation.
A person commits indecency with a child under Texas Penal Code § 21.11(a) if, with a child younger than 17 years of age, whether the child is of the same or opposite sex and regardless of whether the alleged offender knows the age of the child at the time of the offense, they either:
● engage in sexual contact with the child or cause the child to engage in sexual contact; or
● with intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person, expose the alleged offender's anus or any part of their genitals, knowing the child is present, or cause the child to expose their anus or any part of the child's genitals.
Sexual contact is defined under Texas Penal Code § 21.11(c) as the following acts, when committed with the intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person:
● any touching of any part of the body of a child, including touching through clothing, with the anus, breast, or any part of the genitals of a person; or
● any touching by a person, including touching through clothing, of the anus, breast, or any part of the genitals of a child.
It is a second-degree felony to engage in sexual contact with the child or cause a child to engage in sexual contact, but exposing the anus or genitals or causing the child to expose their anus or genitals is a third-degree felony.
A third-degree felony offense is punishable by a fine up to $10,000 and/or up to 10 years in prison. A second-degree felony is punishable by a fine up to $10,000 and/or up to 20 years in prison.
Indecency with a child by contact is considered a sexually violent offense in Texas, and a conviction can result in a person being required to register as a sex offender for life. Indecency with a child by exposure can also result in lifetime registration.
It is an affirmative defense to prosecution for indecency with a child under Texas Penal Code § 21.11(b) that the alleged offender:
● was not more than three years older than the victim and of the opposite sex;
● did not use duress, force, or a threat against the victim at the time of the offense; and
● at the time of the offense, was not required to register for life as a sex offender or was not a person who had a reportable conviction or adjudication for an offense under this section.
It is also an affirmative defense under Texas Penal Code § 21.11(b-1) that the alleged offender was the spouse of the child at the time of the offense.
Evans v. State, 299 S.W.3d 138 (Tex.Crim.App. 2009) — A jury found Timothy K. Evans guilty of both aggravated sexual assault of a child and indecency with a child by contact, committed against the same victim on the same date, and sentenced him to confinement for 60 years for aggravated sexual assault and 20 years for indecency with a child, with the sentences to run concurrently. The Court of Criminal Appeals of Texas noted that the State agreed that the Court held in Cunningham v. State, 726 S.W.2d 151 (Tex.Crim.App.1987) that all of the elements of indecency with a child are included in aggravated sexual assault of a child, meaning that indecency with a child is therefore a lesser-included offense of aggravated sexual assault of a child. Evans’ claimed that his convictions for aggravated sexual assault of a child and indecency with a child violated his federal and State constitutional rights to be free from double jeopardy because both convictions were based on the same incident, and the court of appeals reversed and rendered a judgment of acquittal on Count II (indecency with a child), while affirming the judgment on Count I (aggravated sexual assault of a child), a judgment that the Court of Criminal Appeals of Texas unanimously affirmed.
Texas Youth Hotline | Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) — The Texas Youth Hotline provides prevention services to youths, parents, siblings, and other family members who are in need of a caring voice and sympathetic ear. Trained volunteers are on call to provide referral information, guidance on youth-related concerns, or just listen. The telephone hotline has been in operation since 1973, but text and chat services were added in 2014. You can also find answers to frequently asked questions.
Were you or your loved one arrested for alleged indecency with a child in Fort Worth? Take your criminal charges very seriously.
The Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy will identify the best possible defenses for your case and help you achieve the most favorable outcome resulting the fewest possible penalties. Call (817) 422-5350 or contact us online to set up a free consultation.