Online Solicitation of a Minor—PA Laws

INFORMATION ON ONLINE SOLICITATION OF A MINOR IN PENNSYLVANIA

When a person is accused or charged with a sex crime, they may feel scared for their future, their reputation and their family. Being charged with online solicitation is an embarrassing affair—regardless of guilt or innocence.

Understanding the charges and building a strong legal defense can have a big impact on whether you go to prison, lose your freedom and end up with a criminal record.

An arrest is not a conviction.

It is illegal for an adult to go online and solicit a minor to partake in activities that are considered by law to be unsuitable for minors.

Any form of online communication where an adult is actively seeking out a minor and requesting or urging the minor to engage in sexual activities is a very serious crime. If you are found guilty, you are at risk of serving a long jail sentence, fines, and registration as a sex offender.

Being found guilty of a sex crime is embarrassing and could change life as you know it. If convicted, you may have trouble finding employment and housing in the future. Additionally, sex offenders often carry a terrible social stigma within their community and it is likely to ruin your family life as well.

Fighting your charges by finding an aggressive and experienced sex crime attorney to help prove your innocence and defend your rights is the first step.

Having sexual assault allegations against you is frightening. But you do not have to face the charges alone—Justin Ketchel is an experience Pittsburgh sex crime attorney who will work hard to get your charges reduced or dismissed.

He will give your case personal attention and be there every step of the way to answer your questions and prepare you for hearings or a trial.

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An arrest is not a conviction.

OUR NUMBER ONE GOAL: TO HAVE YOUR SEX CRIME CHARGES DISMISSED

CALL KETCHEL LAW TODAY: 412-456-1221 FOR A FREE CONSULTATION

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Being Charged with Online Solicitation of a Minor in PA

In recent years, law enforcement has increased the amount of online sting operations in order to catch people suspected of online solicitation of a minor.

The situation usually goes something like this: an adult goes online and begins a conversation with someone he or she believes to be a thirteen year old girl. The conversation contains sexual content and possibly sexual photos. Next, he or she arranges to meet with the girl in order to engage in sexual activities. This is online solicitation of a minor and the consequences, if you are found guilty, are severe.

It does not matter if you are in an online conversation with an actual minor, or a police officer posing as one. Nor does it matter if you ever actually meet up with the minor you planned to meet. The outcome is the same regardless—you can be charged with online solicitation of a minor.

Because of the nature of the crime, you could be charged in both Pennsylvania and the U.S. Federal Court. This complicates your case and you must have an attorney that can handle the complexities of federal charges.

Even though you are charged with a crime, that doesn’t mean you will be convicted—you are still innocent until proven guilty. Especially with internet crimes, there are several defenses to sex crimes—one of which is proving that you were the person using the internet at the time of the solicitation. Just because it is your IP address and your computer, does not mean it was you doing the soliciting.

 

OUR NUMBER ONE GOAL: TO HAVE YOUR SEX CRIME CHARGES DISMISSED

CALL KETCHEL LAW TODAY: 412-456-1221 FOR A FREE CONSULTATION

 

PUNISHMENT FOR ONLINE SOLICITATION OF A MINOR IN PENNSYLVANIA

The punishment for online solicitation of a minor varies depending on the circumstances of the case. If you were in contact with a minor but never actually met with the minor or carried out any further criminal acts, you are likely to receive a charge of a felony of the third degree.

A felony of the third degree carries a penalty of up to seven years in prison and $15,000 in fines.

However, if you did meet with the minor and engaged in sexual activity, rape, sexual assault, deviate sexual intercourse, prostitution, open lewdness, or sexual abuse/exploitation of children, you will be charged with each offense separately and the punishment will increase exponentially.

You must leave your case in the hands of an experienced and qualified sex crimes attorney. There is too much at stake.

DEFENSES TO ONLINE SOLICITATION OF A MINOR IN PENNSYLVANIA

With your freedom and future on the line, it is important to understand that there are laws in place to protect your rights. Unlike most crimes, those that occur online have a lot of ambiguity and the prosecution needs proof beyond a reasonable doubt.

For example, perhaps the online contact with a minor did occur and it was from your computer—but perhaps someone else had access to your computer at the time.

Or, since you had no way of physically seeing the person you were having a conversation with, you believed the person to be much older and had no idea you were contacting a minor. The minor could have easily lied about his or her age from behind a computer screen.

Or, in some cases, the police officer posing as a minor did not follow the law and his or her actions encouraged you to commit a crime. This is known as entrapment and it is a valid defense to online solicitation of a minor.

A skilled attorney will look into all of the details of your case to determine if any of your rights have been violated and the best defense possible to allow you to retain your freedom and reputation.

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OUR NUMBER ONE GOAL:

TO HAVE YOUR SEX CRIME CHARGES DISMISSED

CALL KETCHEL LAW TODAY:

412-456-1221 FOR A FREE CONSULTATION

ONLINE SOLICITATION OF A MINOR CHARGES IN PA

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FIGHTING ONLINE SOLICITATION OF A MINOR CHARGES IN PENNSYLVANIA

An arrest is not a conviction.

Being charged with a sex crime is frightening but also an extraordinarily embarrassing affair. Regardless of innocence or guilt, the consequences of a conviction are a real threat to your freedom, rights and liberties.

Professional and social implications are only the beginning considering you are facing prison time and the life-long stigma associated with being a sex offender.

If you are facing online solicitation of a minor charges it is important to hire an attorney right away and not talk to the police or prosecutors, even if you are completely innocent and trying to explain your side of the story. Let an attorney do the talking.

At Ketchel Law, we understand the not everyone accused of a crime is guilty of a crime. There are two sides to every story. We will take your case very seriously and work toward having your charges reduced or your case dismissed.

We will fully investigate all aspects of your case, examining all angles and gathering testimony and witnesses on your behalf. We will go over the charges and the procedures taken by law enforcement carefully. We will aggressively look for any evidence to build a strong case for you and discredit the alleged victim’s testimony.

If your case goes to trial, we will be by your side at every turn, to prepare you and your family for possible questioning and keep you informed so that together we can make the best decision for you and your family.

It is our goal to have your case dismissed and charges reduced and if that is not possible, we will fight aggressively to keep your name off of the national registry of sex offenders.

If you have been charged with a sex crime call Pittsburgh Criminal Attorney Justin J. Ketchel for a free consultation.

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We offer free legal consultations to anyone charged with a crime. Call us today to find out how we can help defend your rights.

Learn more about Ketchel Law and Sex Crime Laws in Pennsylvania:

Learn more about Ketchel Law:

Call Ketchel Law now for a free legal consultation at 412-456-1221.

OUR NUMBER ONE GOAL: GETTING YOUR CHARGES DISMISSED.

CALL KETCHEL LAW TODAY: 412-456-1221

FREE CONSULTATION