Lewd and lascivious offenses fall into the category of sexually motivated crimes. In Florida, lewd and lascivious charges allege an offender engaged in sexual activity with a minor who is older than 12 but younger than 16.
The offense is a strict crime because even if the child consented and did not resist, the offender still would be charged. In addition, if the offender misinterpreted the age of the child or did not know the age of the child, there still could be legal repercussions.
Conviction of a lewd and lascivious offense can carry a lifetime of consequences, including being registered as a sex offender. Once you are labeled a sex offender, there are a series of stipulations that can dictate your life, including your employment, where you live and personal relationships.
If you are charged with a lewd and lascivious offense in Fort Lauderdale or the surrounding areas in Broward County, contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at Meltzer & Bell, P.A.. The team at Meltzer & Bell, P.A. has prosecutorial experience and will use that to advocate for you.
Call (954) 716-8538 to speak to an attorney today about these serious charges. We represent any person charged in Broward County courts, including residents of Fort Lauderdale, Pembroke Pines, Miramar, Coral Springs, Hollywood, Pompano Beach, Plantation, Davie, Sunrise, Weston and Wilton Manors.
According to Florida Statutes Annotated § 800.04, lewd or lascivious battery is defined as engaging in sexual activity with someone older than 12 but younger than 16.
The charge also can be applied if someone forces or entices someone in that age range to engage in sadomasochistic abuse, sexual bestiality, prostitution or any other act involving sexual activity.
Lewd or lascivious battery is a second-degree felony. Additionally, you would be required to register as a sex offender and comply with the state's registration requirements.
Intentionally touching in a lewd manner the breasts, genitals, genital area, buttocks or the clothing covering those areas of a person less than 16 years old is considered lewd or lascivious molestation, according to Florida law.
Also, if a person forces or entices someone younger than 16 years old to touch the perpetrator in those areas, he or she also would be committing lewd or lascivious molestation.
Lewd or lascivious molestation by an offender 18 years or older against a victim between the ages of 12 and 16 would be charged with a second-degree felony. Someone younger than 18 who commits the crime against a victim less than 12 also would be charged with a second-degree felony.
An offender less than 18 years old who commits lewd or lascivious molestation against a victim between the ages of 12 and 16 would be charged with a third-degree felony.
An offender 18 years of age or older who commits lewd or lascivious molestation against a victim less than 12 years of old commits a life felony, punishable by life in prison.
Florida Statutes Annotated § 800.04 defines lewd or lascivious conduct as intentionally touching someone younger than 16 in a lewd manner or soliciting someone younger than 16 to commit a lewd act. Lewd or lascivious conduct by an offender 18 years old or older commits a second-degree felony. An offender younger than 18 years old would be charged with a third-degree felony.
Lewd or lascivious exhibition would include intentionally masturbating, intentionally exposing genitals or committing a sexual act in front of someone younger than 16 years old.
An offender 18 years or older would be charged with a second-degree felony. Anyone younger than 18 years old would face a third-degree felony.
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In Florida, the penalties for lewd and lascivious charges depend on the crime committed, the age of the victim and the age of the perpetrator. The penalties for such crimes range from a third-degree felony to life in prison. If convicted, you could face:
You will also be required to register as a sex offender. Anyone - including a potential employer, landlord or love interest - will be able to look you up by name, neighborhood, university, email address or internet chat handle and learn the details of your offense.
If you are facing a lewd and lascivious charge, contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at Meltzer & Bell, P.A.. The team of attorneys represents clients facing these serious charges throughout the Fort Lauderdale area.
Call Meltzer & Bell, P.A. at (954) 716-8538 to schedule a free consultation.
This article was last updated on Friday, October 28, 2016.
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