While a conviction for any crime has consequences, being convicted of a sex crime can carry some of the toughest penalties. Besides the legal repercussions that come with sex crime allegations, the personal reputation of the accused individual is also at stake. It is true that every person who is accused of a crime is innocent unless or until proven otherwise, but people accused of sex crimes are often considered guilty even before their trial begins.
Individuals charged with child sex crimes often feel at a complete loss because the public and media often make harsh judgments before even knowing the facts of a case. Sometimes people who used to be friends no longer are, and even family members might turn their backs after hearing of a sex crime allegation. In Wisconsin, public response to charges of Internet sex crimes tends to be no different.
In efforts to file criminal charges, sometimes police in Wisconsin will employ tricky tactics. That is exactly what happened in Waukesha County recently when a police officer pretended online to be a 15-year-old girl. Now a 44-year-old Milwaukee man has been charged with Internet crimes.
In criminal cases, when prosecutors have significant evidence and the accused individual has effectively confessed to authorities, a strategic plea for the reduction of charges is necessary to ensure that overcharging or over-sentencing doesn't occur. And that will likely be the case for a former Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod official who, as of March 8, was close to a plea deal in his child pornography case.
Wisconsin law may change with regard to how attempted child enticement is prosecuted. Attorney General J. B. Van Hollen supports a bill that is currently being considered by the Senate Judiciary Committee. If the bill is passed, state law would treat attempted child enticement the same as actually carrying out the crime.
Readers of this blog are likely aware that the law can take a very harsh stand against sex crimes, even if they only occur on the Internet, as viewing or even discussing underage sexual contact is taken very seriously. With that in mind, readers may be interested in the case of a 30-year-old Wisconsin man who is now facing half a dozen felony charges related to child enticement.
Allegations of Internet sex crimes involving child pornography are front page news here in Wisconsin and throughout the country. Law enforcement authorities regularly monitor peer-to-peer networks on the Internet, looking for evidence that child pornography has been downloaded. Once detected, authorities locate the account holders, and a warrant is obtained. The suspect soon finds the authorities knocking at his or her door. A search follows, computers are seized and charges leveled where evidence of internet sex crimes exist.
A Milwaukee man was sentenced to the state-mandated five years in prison after being targeted by an internet sex sting operation. The 59-year-old man, who was originally charged in February, pled guilty in May to allegations of using a computer to organize an Internet sex crime. According to court documentation, the Internet solicitation began just over a year ago.
The accusation of possessing child pornography is treated very seriously in Wisconsin. For individuals convicted of a prior sex charge, the allegation can be even more grave. In fact, anyone convicted of a sexually related crime for the second time may face life in prison. Additionally, an individual who has committed a sexual offense involving a minor may face a sentence that's even more harsh. These circumstances apply directly to a Wisconsin Rapids man who is currently facing possible indictment for internet sex crimes and the sexual exploitation of a child.
The state of Wisconsin maintains that any person who possesses images of children engaged in sexual activity has committed a crime. The sexual exploitation of a child through the possession of child pornography is considered a Class I felony. A 28-year-old Appleton, Wisconsin man will learn firsthand how serious accusations of this nature are following his recent arrest in Outagamie County.