4 Things to Know if You’re Arrested in a Prostitution Sting

Contrary to popular belief, prostitution is not actually a “victimless crime.” The idea that this criminal act is performed only between two consenting adults and that no one is harmed as a result is a pervasive myth. Many of the individuals who engage in prostitution forced to do so against their will, do so as a result of their circumstances or are legally unable to consent. There are also those who are caught up in these situations by mistake or poor judgment and must deal with significant legal consequences and even public shaming as a result. But if you are arrested in culmination with a prostitution sting, the ramifications could be very serious. Here are four things you should know if you are arrested in a prostitution sting.

    1. You could be convicted even if no sexual act took place: You might assume that if you never went through with the act outlined in your agreement, you’ll be in the clear. But the law states that you can still be charged and convicted even if the act doesn’t take place. Keep in mind that during a nationwide sting that resulted in 1,000 arrests, nearly two-fifths of those stemmed from online prostitution ads. However, prosecutors don’t have to actually prove that the sexual acts actually took place in order to convict. They just have to prove that an offer has been made and accepted to exchange money or another item of value for sexual contact. As long as they have evidence that this occurred, you can’t defend yourself with the fact that the act itself never happened.
    2. You might be charged with a felony or be forced to register as a sex offender: As we referenced earlier, the act of prostitution may involve those who are legally unable to consent. And if your case involves such individuals — i.e., minors — you could face even more substantial punishment. If you promote or engage in prostitution and a person under the age of legal consent is involved, you may face a felony charge and may even be required to register as a sex offender. These charges will be even worse if you have other prostitution charges on your record. This type of punishment could mean huge fees, prison time, and difficulties in securing housing and employment for the rest of your life. That’s why it’s essential for those facing any type of prostitution charges to contact a reputable sex crime defense attorney in Clackamas County.
    3. You can invoke your right to stay silent: If you are arrested for sex crimes like these, it’s imperative that you exercise your right to remain silent until your prostitution lawyers are present. You can choose to respectfully refrain from answering any questions; once you verbalize that you will remain silent until your attorney has arrived, the police cannot interrogate you any longer. This is the best way to ensure that your rights are protected and that your sex crime defense attorney in Clackamas County is able to defend you in court.
    4. There may be ways to dismiss or reduce the charges: This may not be true in every case, particularly when evidence is gathered to the letter of the law. However, law enforcement officers involved in prostitution stings don’t always play by the rules every time. Your sex crime defense attorney in Clackamas County may be able to argue that the evidence against you was gathered illegally or that police misconduct makes certain evidence inadmissible in a court of law. There is, of course, no guarantee that your lawyer will be able to get your charges reduced or dropped entirely, particularly if prosecutors have a very strong case against you. However, contacting a lawyer is the best way to make sure someone is fighting for your rights every step of the way.

As we’ve mentioned, contacting a sex crime defense attorney in Clackamas County provides you with the best opportunity for true justice. Because prostitution laws are so complex, it’s vital to have a knowledgeable legal team by your side. For more information, contact our firm today.

Understanding the DUII Diversion Program in Oregon

what is duii diversionIn Oregon, the decision to drink and drive can come with some serious consequences. Intoxicated drivers who choose to operate a vehicle and have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08% or above are breaking the law and will be arrested if they are caught. But if this is your first time being arrested for driving under the influence, you may be able to have your charges dismissed if you opt to participate in a program known as DUII diversion. What is DUII diversion and what’s involved in the DUII diversion process? We’ll discuss those questions in today’s post.

What Is DUII Diversion?

If you are facing a DUII conviction and have already met with a lawyer, you may have heard this program mentioned and wondered, “what is DUII diversion, anyway?” This is a program open to certain individuals who have been arrested on DUII charges. Upon successful completion of this program, participants are able to have their DUII charges dismissed. This is an attractive option for many people who want to avoid a trial and the potential consequences of a conviction. This program typically lasts for one year and involves drug and alcohol treatment, victim impact panels, fees, and the installation of vehicular ignition interlock devices.

Am I Eligible For a DUII Diversion Program?

In order to avoid a DUII conviction through a DUII diversion program, you will need to meet a rather strict set of criteria. You must never have been charged with or convicted of a DUII (or DUI/DWI) in the past in any jurisdiction within the last 15 years. You will be deemed ineligible for a diversion program if you have already participated in such a program within the last 15 years, as well. You cannot have been charged with assault, criminally negligent homicide, manslaughter, or murder related to this vehicle-related charge or others in your past, nor can you participate in the program if the offense in question involved your operation of a commercial motor vehicle. You can’t even hold commercial driver privileges at the time you committed the offense in question. Your DUII charges cannot involve physical injury or death of anyone else, and you cannot have been convicted of a felony DUII/DUI/DWI anywhere else to be eligible. There may be other requirements and conditions you must meet in order to be eligible for a diversion program, so it’s best to consult with a reputable attorney to find out for sure whether this may be an option for you.

What’s Required During the DUII Diversion Process?

If you’re curious to know what is DUII diversion and what is required of participants within this program, your lawyer will be an excellent resource. When you agree to enter into a diversion program, you will be required to sign an agreement with the court that says your charges will be dismissed if you complete everything that’s required of you within a certain time frame (typically within a year). You’ll need to undergo an evaluation to determine what type of treatment you require and complete the drug or alcohol treatment (usually in a classroom setting). You will also be required to go to a victims’ impact treatment session once during your program. You must make a commitment to abstaining from alcohol and drug consumption for the entirety of the program. You’ll need to install an ignition interlock device on any and all vehicles you drive during the program, even if your license is already suspended. Finally, you will need to pay for assessments, fees, and other costs during this time. Your DUII diversion attorneys will inform you that you have to plead “not guilty” or “no contest” in order to enter this program; be aware that if you do not complete the program and violate this agreement, this will impact the outcome of your case. However, if you do complete the program successfully, you will be able to file a motion with your lawyer to dismiss the DUII charge.

For many people who are facing their first DUII charge, understanding exactly what is DUII diversion and the benefits of this type of program will be essential. To find out more or to explore the options available to you, contact our law firm today.

Promoting Vs. Compelling Prostitution in Oregon: Differences Explained

criminaldefenseattorneySex crimes involving prostitution are typically taken quite seriously in the United States. The stakes are high for anyone involved in this type of crime — not only due to the possible legal consequences but to the social stigma involved, as well. In Oregon, prostitution is illegal, as is the act of solicitation (also known as paying for a prostitute). But these are not the only cases prostitution lawyers handle. Depending on the circumstances, you could find yourself charged with promoting prostitution or compelling prostitution. Let’s take a look at the differences between these charges and examine what you should do if you are facing allegations like these.

Promoting Prostitution

An individual may be charged with promoting prostitution if they knowingly and intentionally own, control, manage, supervise, or maintain a place where prostitution is done or a prostitution enterprise; if they cause or induce another person to engage in prostitution or remain in a place where prostitution is done; if they receive or agree to receive money, property, goods, services, or some other item of value known to be derived from prostitution activities; or if they engage in any conduct that aids, facilitates, or institutes an act or enterprise of prostitution. This crime is informally known as pimping.

The charges of promoting prostitution are more serious than solicitation or prostitution itself. This is a Class C felony. It’s therefore punishable by up to five years in prison and up to $125,000 in fines. Not every individual found guilty of promoting prostitution will go to prison — some will spend time in jail and/or will be put on probation instead — it’s best not to take your chances. It’s essential that you contact a criminal defense attorney with ample experience in these matters to ensure your rights are protected in court.

Compelling Prostitution

The act of compelling prostitution differs from promotion in the sense that it typically involves force and/or fear. A person can be charged with this crime if they knowingly use intimidation or force to compel another individual to attempt or engage in prostitution; if they cause or help a minor under 18 years of age to engage in prostitution; or if they cause their child, stepchild, or spouse to engage in prostitution.

Note that the state is not actually required to prove that the person charged with this crime had knowledge that the minor individual compelled to commit prostitution was under the age of 18 — nor is the lack of that knowledge a valid defense. Compelling prostitution is an even more serious crime that promoting prostitution. It is a Class B felony that is punishable by up to 10 years in prison and up to $25,000 in fines. If found guilty, serving time in prison is usually a given. However, hiring a criminal defense attorney will provide defendants with the best possible chance of a positive outcome at trial.

One would hope that you or someone you love will never be charged with promoting or compelling prostitution. But if this should occur, it’s critical that the defendant’s rights be protected. Hiring a criminal defense attorney should be one of the first things you do in cases like these. To find out more information, please contact our firm today.

The Necessity of DUII Lawyers: Why You Should Never Represent Yourself

duii defense attorneyAlthough many of us have vowed to never drink and drive, the reality is that we all make mistakes. If you’ve gotten behind the wheel while intoxicated and were later arrested for a DUII, you’ll have a lot of decisions to make in the coming days, weeks, and months. One of the most important of these decisions is how to defend yourself in a court of law. While most people understand that hiring DUII defense attorneys will typically provide the best outcome, others are convinced that they can represent themselves. Here are a few reasons you really do need an attorney’s expertise and guidance.

DUII Law Can Be Extremely Complicated

You might think that your case is straightforward and that the justice system will work in your favor. Unfortunately, you may be in for a rude awakening. DUII law is immensely complex. You might find out the hard way that you need someone with more experience and knowledge of the law to guide you. Being an avid fan of “Law and Order” and other crime shows is no replacement for having an actual lawyer. When you choose to represent yourself, you cannot ask for help when you don’t understand something. You’ll likely end up confused and in a heap of trouble. Which brings us to our next point…

Your Odds Are Better With Legal Representation

Statistics show that you are much more likely to have DUII charges dismissed or reduced if you have help from DUII defense attorneys than if you try to go it alone. And while getting those charges reduced or dismissed may not be an option in all cases, it’s still essential to have legal representation. Because your lawyer is more familiar with the law and with both judges and other attorneys, they’re in a much better position to protect your rights and build a defense. Without a lawyer, the outcome of your case could be very grim. But by hiring an attorney, you will be making an investment in your future. That’s a good segue into our next point…

Hiring DUII Defense Attorneys May Be More Affordable

Approximately 10.3 million people reported driving under the influence of illicit drugs from 2011 to 2012, and driving while intoxicated is even more common. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are 111 million self-reported episodes of alcohol-impaired driving among U.S. adults on an annual basis. Some of those who get caught breaking the law and are arrested for these crimes may feel like they have very few financial options available to them. They might be quick to dismiss the idea of hiring DUII defense attorneys due to the costs they assume are involved. However, it’s important to keep the hidden costs of a DUII charge in mind. You might think you’ll be saving a lot by going the DIY route, but you could end up paying far more in fines, lost wages, and insurance hikes. In the end, hiring attorney will probably be much more cost-effective than trying to represent yourself — particularly if you’re facing jail time. Which brings us to our last point…

The Bottom Line: Self-Representation Is Extremely Risky

Whether this is your first DUII charge or your fifth, the stakes are going to be high. Representing yourself in a civil matter, while still not usually recommended, may come with lower risks. But when you’re dealing with criminal charges, choosing to represent yourself will most likely backfire in a very dramatic way. Not only might you have to pay steep fees, but you may also end up with a conviction on your criminal record, a prolonged loss of driving privileges, and even jail time. Thinking you can beat these charges will likely result in some tough lessons, many of which will follow you for the rest of your life. Even after you’ve paid fines, served time, and reinstated your driving privileges, you may find it nearly impossible to secure housing or a job. The decision to represent yourself could derail your entire future.

When you have so much to lose, you can’t afford to take any chances. Don’t take a risk by representing yourself. Contact our DUII defense attorneys to schedule a consultation.

Why Do People Drink and Drive? The Reasons Might Be More Complex Than You Think

dui lawyer in beaverton

Despite the fact that many of us vow never to drink and drive, the reality is that a lot of Americans choose to get behind the wheel while intoxicated. And even though they may know the risks, they may dismiss the dangers and go out on the open road even when they shouldn’t. You might be quick to dismiss their motivations as selfish or stupid — and sometimes, they are. But there are actually several reasons why people choose to drink and drive. Of course, the reasons behind the decision to drink and drive may not matter much in court; that’s why working with an experienced DUI lawyer in Beaverton is so important if you are arrested for these charges. But it may help families and friends to prevent drunk driving if they’re better able to understand the thought process behind it.

The Most Common Reasons For Drinking and Driving

  • Impaired Judgment: It probably won’t surprise you to learn that one of the main reasons people choose to drive while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is that they misjudge just how impaired they are. When you’re intoxicated, your mind is altered. You may not be able to properly judge your physical limitations or how greatly your thought process has been affected. This may be especially true for young people (who are less-experienced drivers and less-experienced drinkers), but it’s also a factor for those who are well above legal age and who have had their licenses for decades.
  • Pressure or Embarrassment: Sometimes, a person may be inclined to get behind the wheel of a car to prove that they’re in control to themselves or others. They might also do so out of embarrassment; no one likes to admit they’re too drunk to drive, especially if they have to call a friend or family member to come to their rescue. But unless you want to be faced with hiring DUI attorneys after a crash, this is one time where you should swallow your pride and call for a ride. It’s all about your mindset. This situation happens to the best of us, but what doesn’t have to happen is a horrific accident wherein you risk your life or the lives of others. Calling an Uber or even a parent is worth the momentary pangs of embarrassment.
  • Financial Reasons: Some people may not want to pay for a ride home. If you’re strapped for cash, that thought may be understandable. But in the long run, the cost of a Lyft or a taxi is far more cost-effective than what you’ll pay in legal fees to your DUI lawyer in Beaverton or for the damages you’ll have caused. Make it a point to plan ahead for the cost of transportation in the event you’re unable to drive. Transfer money into your bank account, take out cash from an ATM, or keep your purchases in-check if you know you’ll be too worried about the costs of transportation to make a smart choice when you’re under the influence.
  • False Sense of Security: In addition to impaired judgment, many people also operate under a false sense of security when they choose to drink and drive. There are statistics that show that fewer than 4,000 people are arrested daily for drunk driving, despite the fact that people drive while intoxicated nearly 300,000 every day. People who have driven drunk before without incident may feel especially invincible in this area. But of course, this behavior will end in disaster sooner or later. Whether it’s your first time driving while intoxicated or your 10th, any DUI lawyer in Beaverton will tell you that this is a serious offense. Don’t choose to do it simply because you think you won’t get caught. That high level of confidence may be precisely what ruins the rest of your life.

While we hope that you will never drink and drive, the truth is that we all make mistakes. If you are facing DUI or DUII allegations, it’s essential to hire a reputable DUI lawyer in Beaverton to ensure that one mistake doesn’t derail your entire future. To find out more, contact us today.