Fort Worth Solicitation Lawyer
While many states have separate solicitation and prostitution laws, Texas combines the two into a single criminal offense with uniform penalties. Various circumstances surrounding the alleged offense can increase the severity of the charges and corresponding penalties. Therefore, if you are accused of solicitation, you should consider getting legal advice from a Fort Worth solicitation lawyer.
Solicitation charges can be damaging to your personal and professional life. A conviction can remain on your record indefinitely and may result in incarceration. Due to the potential seriousness of these penalties, consulting a savvy criminal lawyer may be advantageous.
Solicitation Laws in Fort Worth
Under Tex. Pen. Code § 43.02, when someone knowingly offers or agrees to pay a fee to another person for the purposes of engaging in sexual conduct, they commit solicitation. This is the case whether someone intended to engage in sexual conduct with the person they paid or with another person altogether.
One important characteristic of solicitation laws is that there is no requirement that any sexual conduct or contact occur to support criminal charges. If an offer or agreement regarding payment in exchange for sexual conduct occurs, it is solicitation. For this reason, seeking the advice of a Fort Worth solicitation lawyer may be advisable.
Potential Consequences of Engaging in This Behavior
According to Tex. Pen. Code § 43.02, solicitation of prostitution is a Class B misdemeanor. In some cases, however, the charge can increase to a Class A misdemeanor or state jail felony. One or two previous convictions can result in a Class A misdemeanor charge and three or more previous convictions can result in a state jail felony charge.
Solicitation offenses also may be charged as second-degree felonies if someone purposely offers or agree to pay another to engage in sexual conduct with a person who is under the age of 18, represented to be under the age 18, or believed to be under the age of 18. These elevated charges are a possibility regardless as to whether the accused knew the person was under 18.
The level of the offense charged determines the extent of the potential penalties someone may face for solicitation of prostitution. These penalties may include the payment of thousands of dollars in fines, as well as incarceration, as follows:
- Class B misdemeanor – up to 180 days in jail
- Class A misdemeanor – up to one year in jail
- State jail felony – between 180 days and two years in jail
- Second-degree felony – between two and 20 years in prison
The penalties for solicitation of prostitution may be substantial. A Fort Worth solicitation attorney may be able to help those accused build a strong defense to the charges.
Consult a Fort Worth Solicitation Attorney for Advice
The penalties for prostitution and solicitation can be very harsh, particularly if you have prior convictions or the offense involves individuals under the age of 18. Getting the advice of a Fort Worth solicitation lawyer may help you protect your future and build a strong defense.
A felony conviction can have negative implications that can last well beyond the penalties imposed by the criminal justice system. The impact on your civil rights and career can be highly detrimental. Therefore, it is important to work with someone who can help. Call now to get started.