Child abuse cases are among the most challenging criminal law cases an attorney can take up. One of the reasons is that there are so many myths and misconceptions associated with these cases that the people facing these charges tend to make mistakes that they should not make and inadvertently end up strengthening the case against them. Let us now take a look at five of the most common myths about child abuse cases including indecency, child sexual assault and child sex abuse cases.
Myth #1: Children Never Lie
Fact: Children can and do lie – especially when they are coached by another adult; who in most cases happens to be a parent. Data from the National Children’s Advocacy Center (NCAC) shows that 2% to 10% of all child sex abuse allegations tend to be unfounded or false.
Myth #2: The Child Consented to Sexual Activity. So, It Is Not a Crime
Fact: Under Texas law, a child under the age of 17 cannot consent to any kind of sexual activity. With that said, even if a child willingly participates in a sexual activity, it will still be considered a crime. And, the adult in question can be charged with indecency with a child or sexual assault – depending on the circumstances.
Myth #3: The Alleged Incident Happened a Long Time Ago. They Cannot Charge Me Now.
Fact: Under Texas law, there is no statute of limitations for prosecuting sex crimes against children. Based on this, even if the alleged incident happened several decades ago, you can still be charged with a crime.
Myth #4: The Child Lied about His or Her Age. So, the Prosecution Cannot Charge Me.
Fact: Even if the child lied about his or her age, you will still be charged with child sexual assault and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. This is because Texas law assumes that children under the age of 17 are too immature to be held responsible for their own actions. So, it is the duty of the adult to find out whether or not the person they are being intimate with is over the age of 17. If you fail to do so, you could be in serious trouble.
Myth #5: The Allegations against Me Are Entirely False. So, I Can Defend Myself.
Fact: Unless you happen to be a qualified lawyer, you cannot defend yourself in court. This is especially the case when the charges are as serious as child sexual assault. The prosecution will throw the book at you and do everything they can to get a conviction. Only an attorney who is experienced in handling child sex abuse cases can defend you against false allegations. He can also prove your innocence, and protect your rights and freedom.
Facing Child Sexual Assault Charges in Austin? Talk to Use for the Right Legal Defense Strategy
At Hines & Holub, we know how difficult it can be for someone to face false allegations of child sex abuse. Our board-certified attorneys have over 85 years of combined experience in handling a wide array of criminal law cases – from DWI to sexual assault. We have the legal expertise, resources, and trial experience to take up your case and we are committed to fight as hard as we can to achieve the best possible outcome.
If you have any questions or if you want to discuss your case, call us today at 512-883-5386. Or, contact us online and schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced Austin child sexual assault defense attorneys.