If you’re facing multiple counts of child molestation charges in Arizona, you may be asking yourself, “Is there a mandatory penalty I have to face if I am convicted?” Unfortunately, the answer is yes. The State of Arizona considers child molestation a serious crime and has strict laws regarding sentencing for these offenses. In this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at the penalties you may face if convicted of two or more counts of child molestation in the state of Arizona.
What is Child Molestation?
First, it’s essential to understand the definition of the crime you’re accused of. Child molestation includes various sexual offenses, such as sexual contact and penetration, involving a child under the age of 15. The severity of the crime depends on the specific act and the age of the victim. It’s a class 2 felony in Arizona, carrying a minimum of ten years to life imprisonment.
The state of Arizona has mandatory minimum sentences for various violent offenses, including child molestation with multiple counts. If you’re found guilty of two or more counts of child molestation, you may be sentenced to a minimum of 35 years in prison without parole. This sentence even applies if the counts arise from the same act of molestation. So, if you touch three areas of a child’s body, that could result in three counts of molestation that carry a minimum 35-year sentence.
Factors that can Affect Sentencing
Several factors can influence the severity of your sentence, even if you’re facing mandatory minimums. For example, if the court determines that there were aggravating factors present, such as violence or coercion during the molestation, you may face additional penalties. Additionally, the court may consider the age of the victim, your criminal history, and your potential for rehabilitation.
If you’re facing charges of child molestation with multiple counts, the best course of action is to hire an experienced lawyer to defend you. Your attorney can fight to have the charges dropped or reduced, or argue in court for lesser punishment. They can also challenge the evidence, and if necessary, defend you in front of a jury.
While facing child molestation charges is a frightening and stressful experience, we hope this article has helped you understand the mandatory penalties associated with multiple counts of the crime in Arizona. Remember, facing charges is not the same as being guilty, and the law provides ways for you to fight the allegations against you. If you’re facing these accusations, contact an experienced attorney immediately to guide you through the legal process.