Jan 28

Runaway Teen Faces Statutory Rape Charges for Underage Girlfriend

A young runaway has been charged with statutory rape.

Image Credit: Pixabay – Nemo

You most likely have seen it in the news lately; a teen from another state went on a crime spree with his girlfriend. They stole cars and led police on a chase across multiple states. The police eventually caught up with the pair, and the 18-year-old young man is facing multiple charges. But, a charge he didn’t expect was also added – statutory rape. Unbeknownst to him, the girl he thought was the same age turned out to be only 13. Unfortunately, situations like this are becoming more and more common in Denver, Arapahoe, and El Paso County and across the nation. Children are exploring their sexuality at earlier ages, and fake id’s are easy to obtain. Let’s take a look at how a person can be charged here in Colorado.

What is the Age of Consent in Colorado?

Lawmakers recognized the need to change the laws to match our sexualized culture. Thus, they came up with the “age of consent,” otherwise known as the Romeo and Juliet law. The age of consent varies, depending on the circumstances.

  • If a child is under the age of 15, they can consent to a sexual relationship if their partner is not more than four years older.
  • If a child is 15 or older, they can consent if their partner is not more than 10 years older.

The young man firmly believed his girlfriend was 19. Unfortunately, his ignorance doesn’t help him in court.

What is Statutory Rape in Colorado?

When the ages don’t fit into the age of consent guidelines, however, the older person in the relationship will face sexual offense charges. There are two possible charges:

  1. Sexual Assault – C.R.S. 18-3-402

According to the law, a person can be charged with this offense if the “victim is less than fifteen years of age and the actor is at least four years older than the victim.” This crime requires sexual penetration.

  1. Sexual Assault on a Child – C.R.S. 18-3-405

According to the law, a person can be charged with this offense if the “victim is less than fifteen years of age and the actor is at least four years older than the victim.” This crime does not require sexual penetration, but can result merely from touching a child’s private areas.

As you can see, these two definitions are very similar. And, regardless of the offense, the consequence of a conviction is an indeterminate prison sentence, sex offender treatment, and registration as a sex offender.

But, I Thought She Was Older? Why it Doesn’t Always Matter

The young man who went on a crime spree with his girlfriend is adamant that he didn’t know she was only 13 years old. He says she told him she owned a truck and had a license. They went out for three months before embarking on their journey of crime, and he was unaware of her age. His family backs up his story; the young man’s sister once went with the couple to a convenience store. The girlfriend was able to purchase cigarettes, which further backed up their belief that she as 19. Unfortunately, the fact the young man didn’t know how old his girlfriend was doesn’t matter in court. This is because she was so young. There is a defense for ignorance about age (C.R.S. 18-1-503.5), but it only applies when the alleged victim is at least fifteen:

“If the criminality of conduct depends on a child being younger than eighteen years of age and the child was in fact at least fifteen years of age, it shall be an affirmative defense that the defendant reasonably believed the child to be 18 years of age or older.”

The statute goes on, specifically targeting anyone under the age StatutorStatuof 15 years old.

“If the criminality of the conduct depends on a child’s being younger than eighteen years of age and the child was in fact younger than fifteen years of age, there shall be no defense that the defendant reasonably believed the child was eighteen years of age or older.”

As you can see, the fact that the young man didn’t know how old his girlfriend was has no effect on his situation. Even though the relationship was completely mutual, he is the one who will face life-long consequences of Sexual Assault – not the young woman who lied about her age.

Why You Need a Lawyer for Statutory Rape Charges

The laws simply haven’t completely caught up yet.

Today’s culture is saturated with sexual innuendos and sexual situations. Girls are encouraged to be sexual at younger ages than ever before. The laws simply haven’t completely caught up yet. The young woman who lied about her age should be held responsible – after all, she had a fake ID and lied repeatedly to her boyfriend and his family. But instead, she will be treated like a victim while her boyfriend goes to prison. This is unjust. This is why you need an aggressive criminal defense lawyer fighting on your behalf if you’ve been charged with statutory rape. Don’t stand alone in court and let the judge and jury convict you as a sex offender. Instead, contact one of our hard-hitting lawyers to be your advocate in court and protect your future.

If you or a loved one has been charged with statutory rape, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the O’Malley Law Office for a free consultation at 303-830-0880. Together, we can protect your future.

Jan 26

How Denver Police Investigate a Sexual Assault Case

Learn how Denver police investigate sexual assault cases.

Image Credit: Pixabay – OpenClips

As an experienced criminal defense attorney, I have spent 25 years poring over police reports, listening to 911 calls, and finding evidence in criminal cases in Denver, Arapahoe, and Jefferson County. I have defended clients accused of many crimes, but the majority of these crimes are crimes like Sexual Assault or Unlawful Sexual Contact. The police in Denver, Centennial, and Aurora investigate sexual crimes differently. Here is an overview of how Sexual Assault crimes are investigated so you can have insight into how the system works.

Step Number One: Allegations are Made

1. An Accusation is Made

The first step in a Sexual Assault investigation begins after a young woman or a child makes an accusation that they were subjected to unwanted sexual touching. Penetration, force, or injury are not necessary. This is done either by calling the police directly, or someone calling the police after talking to an adult or child.

2. Basic Report

Once the police have received a report of Sexual Assault, they send a patrol officer to the scene to get a basic report from the alleged victim.

3. An Investigator is Assigned

Next, an investigator is assigned specifically to look into the case. This investigator will meet with the alleged victim, and the parents of the alleged victim (if it is a child), in order to get a general idea of the accusations.

4. For Child Cases, a Forensic Interview is Scheduled

If the alleged victim is a child, the investigator will schedule a forensic interview for the child. Vague questions will be asked during this interview, such as: “Why are you here?”; “What happened next?” Children often make up stories during these interviews, but the police ignore anything the child says which could prove they are lying.

5. Interviews

Next, the detective will interview people who will support the accusations of the alleged victim. When deciding who to interview, the police avoid questioning anyone who opposes the story told by the alleged victim – they aren’t looking for the truth, they’re looking for a conviction.

6. Pretext Calls Arranged

During Sexual Assault investigations, the police often employ a questionable tactic called a pretext call. For this tactic, the police have the alleged victim come to the police station and call the person they have accused. A device is used which makes the alleged victim’s caller id show up on their accuser’s phone. Then, the alleged victim asks the defendant why they did it, trying to elicit a confession. The entire phone conversation is recorded by the police and used as evidence. Even if a person doesn’t confess to a crime, everything they say will be used against them in court.

7. Investigator Speaks to the Defendant

Next, the detective will try to contact the defendant in the Sexual Assault case. This is done either in person, or over the phone. In some cases, the investigator will ask the accused to come into the police station for an interview. The investigator will be sure to inform the defendant he isn’t under arrest, and is free to leave, according to the required Miranda advisement. Next, the investigating detective will put pressure on the accused to confess or admit harmful facts.

8. Arrest and Court Appearance

Usually, at the end of the interview, the accused is arrested and brought to the court. There, they will be advised on the charges of Sexual Assault and have their bail / bond set.

My Insight as a Criminal Defense Lawyer

I have been a sex crimes defense attorney for 25 years in Douglas, Adams, and El Paso County. During this time, I have witnessed how Sexual Assault cases are investigated. Now, it’s important to keep in mind that Sexual Assault cases are serious – many of them carry mandatory prison time and/or lifetime imprisonment. Here are my insights into how Sexual Assault cases are investigated:

No Evidence Required: No physical evidence is needed for a conviction of Sexual Assault or Sexual Assault on a Child. In fact, most sex crime cases don’t require any evidence at all for an arrest and conviction.

No Difficult Questions: Interviews with the alleged victims never include the difficult questions that demand the truth. Instead, vague questions are employed because investigators want to be “supportive” of the victim.

Ignoring the Evidence: The police and District Attorney always believe the alleged victim. This is true even in cases where the evidence shows they are lying. This is because they are terrified of criticism from special interest groups (victim’s rights and feminist groups) that they aren’t supportive of a victim of a sexual crime.

Tricks Employed: The police use tricks to try to get people to confess to a crime. These tricks include the pretext call tactic and outright lies. In fact, in one of our Sexual Assault cases, the police told our client there was an eyewitness to the assault. There wasn’t one.

Not Looking for Truth: Detectives, investigators, and the police aren’t looking for the truth. They don’t want to know what really happened. Instead, they are gathering evidence to use against the accused in the courtroom, ignoring evidence which shows they are innocent.

Arrests: The police will always make an arrest once they have gotten all the statements they can get from the accused.

Why You Need a Lawyer During Sexual Assault Investigations

The deck is always stacked against the accused, which is why you need the expertise of an aggressive lawyer in the courtroom.

If you’ve been contacted by the police regarding a Sexual Assault case, don’t hesitate to contact an aggressive criminal defense lawyer to fight on your behalf and keep you informed of your rights. The deck is always stacked against the accused in Sexual Assault cases. The police will employ every tactic in the book to confuse the accused and trick them into giving them information. You never should speak with the police. Instead, contact one of our hard-hitting criminal defense lawyers who will fight for your rights when they are being ignored by the government. Don’t try to convince the police you are innocent. They will never believe you. You need an advocate in court who believes your story and fights to prove your innocence to the judge or jury.

If you or a loved one is being investigated for Sexual Assault or any other sex crime, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the O’Malley Law Office for a free consultation at 303-830-0880. Together, we can protect your future.

 

Jan 23

Man Caught by Internet Sting Operation: Internet Luring in Denver

Man caught by internet sting operation.

Image Credit: Pixabay – Nemo

Internet sting operations are common. In fact, most people charged with Internet Luring in Adams, Denver, and El Paso County are caught by sting operations, rather than in situations where an actual child is put in danger. I read an article recently that was unusual; a man was arrested after an internet sting operation. While this in and of itself isn’t unusual, the oddity lies in the fact that he knew it was likely a sting operation, but he responded to the ad anyway. Let’s take a look at this situation and how sting operations work.

Internet Sting Operations and Internet Luring: How They Work

Before we take a look at a specific example, let’s take a moment to understand Internet Luring charges and how internet sting operations are used to entrap people. Internet Luring of a Child – C.R.S. 18-3-306, is charged in Douglas, Arapahoe, and Jefferson County whenever a person:

“Knowingly communicates over a computer…telephone…or data network or by a text message…to a person who the actor knows or believes to be under fifteen years of age and, in that communication…describes explicit sexual conduct…and in connection with that description, makes a statement persuading or inviting the person to meet the actor for any purpose, and the actor is more than four years older than the person or than the age the actor believes the person to be.”

That is the complete definition – let me clarify it a bit more. Here’s my simple definition:

If a person knowingly communicates online or over the phone with a person they believe to be under 15, and during the communication they:

  1. Describe explicit sexual conduct, and
  2. Make a statement persuading the child to meet for any purpose.

Internet sting operations are commonly run in order to catch people who are trying to have a sexual relationship with a younger teen. In fact, many sting operations are organized and run by a Jefferson County District Attorney investigator, Mike Harris.

Man Suspected Sting Operation: Contacted Anyway

In this operation, the “girl” was an undercover police officer.

Now, I’ll give you an example of a sting operation – this one took place out-of-state, but it still provides a good example. According to the news, a man was arrested for trying to meet a 14-year-old girl for sex. The man had contacted the “girl” a few days earlier. He probably found a posting online, to which he responded. The “girl” responded with her age, and said she was “willing to try anything.” The man then sent her a sexual photo of himself, discussed sexual behavior, and arranged a meeting. When he pulled up to the meeting place, he was met by police officers. The “girl” was actually an undercover police officer. The man was arrested, and while he was booked, he informed the cops that a few of his friends had warned him the whole thing was probably a sting operation. Unfortunately, he didn’t listen to his friends, and now he faces serious sex offense charges.

Why You Need a Lawyer if You’ve Been Arrested

A conviction will have a long-term negative effect on your life; a lawyer can help.

If you’ve been arrested as a result of an internet sting operation, don’t hesitate to contact one of the hardworking criminal defense lawyers at the O’Malley Law Office. Your future is at stake; an Internet Luring of a Child conviction will have a long-term negative effect on your life. In most cases, it is a class 5 felony, which carries a possible prison sentence of up to 3 years. If the accused is planning to meet for sex or sexual exploitation, it is a class 4 felony. The biggest consequences, however, are the requirements to register as a sex offender and go through sex offender treatment. It’s important not to speak with the police – the man in the story above admitted everything to the police, which will not help him in his criminal case. Instead of providing information for the prosecution, contact one of our aggressive criminal defense lawyers who will fight to protect your future.

If you or a loved one has been arrested after an internet sting operation, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the O’Malley law Office for a free consultation at 303-830-0880. Together, we can protect your future.

Jan 21

Probation Violation in Denver Can End in Prison: You Need a Lawyer

Probation violation - peeping Tom sentenced to prison in CO.

Image Credit: Pixabay – OpenClips

Sometimes, you can have the best lawyer and get the best possible outcome in your criminal case in Denver, Arapahoe, and El Paso County, but still end up going to prison. How, you might ask? People often go to prison because they didn’t live by the rules and follow the restrictions of their probation. Then, their probation is revoked. This is frustrating, because people are often their own worst enemies. A perfect example of this is found in a recent article I read about a man who just got sentenced to prison after violating his probation terms and conditions. Let’s take a look at his situation in order to understand what I mean.

Peeping Tom Caught on College Campus

According to the news, a young man was arrested after he was caught filming women while they were taking showers in the dormitory at Colorado College. He was charged with multiple crimes, including Invasion of Privacy for Sexual Gratification – C.R.S.  18-3-405.6. He must have had an excellent criminal defense attorney, because he received probation for his offenses.

Man Sentenced to Prison After Probation Violation

That was in October of 2013. Fast-forward to 2015, and this young man is now going to prison. Why? Because he violated probation, missed required meetings, and failed to register as a sex offender. Because he failed to do what he was supposed to, a judge revoked his probation and sentenced the young man to 4 years in the Colorado Department of Corrections.

A Lawyer Can Help You, So You Don’t Violate Probation

If you’ve received a Complaint to Revoke Probation, we are often able to speak with the DA and judge to lessen the consequences.

A person could have the best criminal defense lawyer in the world, but if they don’t take responsibility and make sure they fulfill all the requirements of probation or their sex offender registration requirements, prison is a likely outcome. This is frustrating as a criminal defense attorney, because we can only help our clients so much. We can work out a favorable plea agreement, but if our client doesn’t take responsibility and abide by the rules, there’s not much we can do. This doesn’t mean there isn’t hope, however. When a client receives a Complaint to Revoke Probation, we are often able to speak with the DA and judge in order to lessen the consequences. This is why working with an aggressive defense attorney is wise – we have 40 years of combined courtroom experience and can help you understand the rules and requirements of probation, so you don’t commit a violation. Don’t go through the criminal justice system alone – hire a competent attorney to stand by your side and guide you in Douglas, Adams, and Jefferson County.

If you or a loved one has been accused of violating probation in the Denver area and have been contacted regarding probation violation, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the O’Malley Law Office for a free consultation at
303-830-0880. Together, we can protect your future.

Jan 19

“Victim” Mentality and How it Affects Denver Sex Crime Cases

A victim mentality is sneaking into CO courts.

Image Credit: Pixabay – geralt

The next generation of Americans is full of people who are trained to be victims. If you watch TV at all these days, you know that being a victim is glamorized everywhere; in TV shows, in the movies, and in music. The media thrives on immorality and sensationalism. Suddenly, cheating on your spouse, lying to your parents, and sleeping around is acceptable, as long as it’s “right for you.” Unfortunately, this mentality has snuck into the courtroom, where victims are glamorized and treated like royalty. This is especially true in sex offense cases in Denver, Arapahoe, and Jefferson County. Let’s take a look at how the victimized mentality effects sex crime cases.

It’s Easy to Be a Victim in Colorado Criminal Cases

Our culture idolizes the victimized mentality. It’s easy to be a victim of life – it is human nature. People want to be coddled and feel important. Often, false accusations are made simply as a way to get attention. Unfortunately, our criminal justice system is built on catering to victims without questioning whether or not their story is true. This is especially true when it comes to Unlawful Sexual Contact and Sexual Assault cases, where no evidence is needed for charges or a conviction. Once a victim decides to make a report, the rest is taken care of: Victim’s Advocates and DAs often help them fill out the accusations in police reports, and tell them what to say in the courtroom.

The Government Focuses on the Alleged Victim

The government should be neutral in criminal cases. After all, a person is supposed to be considered innocent until they can be proven guilty. Instead of focusing on justice, the government hires people to coddle and cater to alleged victims, so they will not change their story. These people are called Victim’s Advocates. Victim’s Advocates are assigned to alleged victims in criminal cases, where their purpose in life is to make sure the alleged victim’s every whim is met. Victim’s Advocates educate alleged victims about how to act in the courtroom (training them how to be a good victim), provide snacks before court, and make being a victim glamorous by appealing to their victimized mentality.

Focusing on the Alleged Victim Creates an Unfair System

The DA presents a tear-inducing victim in the courtroom, gaining the sympathy of jurors through emotion. This disguises their lack of evidence.

District Attorneys and Victim’s Advocates focus on creating better victims, because it will advance their careers. Prosecutors who create and present a tear-inducing victim in the courtroom will get the sympathy of the jury through emotion – even if there are no facts to support the case. This is especially true when it comes to sex crime cases in Adams, El Paso, and Douglas County. In most sex offense cases, the alleged victim is a young woman or a small child, which makes prosecutors and Victim’s Advocates jobs much easier. The lengths Victim’s Advocates go to create better victims is appalling. We have heard from wives who were told by Victim’s Advocates and social services to divorce their husbands – threatening to take away their children if they don’t take their suggestion. Defendants are demonized in criminal cases – restraining orders are put into effect which keeps them from living freely, and they aren’t allowed to have contact with children (even their own). Defendants quickly lose heart when prosecutors and Victim’s Advocates focus solely on the victim, instead of justice. This is all part of the DA “win at all cost” strategy.

Victimized Mentality is Prevalent, Which is Why You Need a Lawyer

The victimized mentality is prevalent in our culture. If you have been charged with a crime in Colorado, I guarantee you will come face to face with this phenomenon in the courtroom. As a defendant in a criminal case, it will be difficult to break through this mentality. This is why you need to work with an aggressive criminal defense lawyer, who will be your advocate in the courtroom and allow your voice to be heard. Otherwise, an untrustworthy person making a false accusation will be believed, and a story will grow about your crimes. You need an attorney with experience to see what is happening and protect your future by showing the lack of evidence to the jury, and demanding justice with a not-guilty verdict. Don’t stand alone; work with an attorney from the O’Malley Law Office who fights to win.

If you have been charged with a crime in Colorado, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the O’Malley Law Office for a free consultation at 303-830-0880. Together, we can protect your future.

Jan 16

Young Couple Busted for Having Sex on the Hood of a Car

Sex on the hood of a car in public? Public Indecency.

Image Credit: Pixabay – Nemo

Sometimes, people make questionable choices. And sometimes, these choices result in serious criminal charges in Adams, Denver, and El Paso County. In the moment, people often make choices that will follow them for the rest of their lives. Need an example? An out-of-state couple was just busted for having sex on the hood of a car at a dealership. If this occurred in Colorado, the two would be charged with Public Indecency. Let’s take a look at what happened, and learn how you can be charged with this crime.

A Questionable Choice: Sex on the Hood of a Car

According to the news, people called the police after hearing suspicious noises, and then spotting two people having sex of the hood of a car at an auto sales store. When the police arrived, they found the couple getting dressed inside a white van (which also belonged to the dealership). Now, you might ask why anyone would trespass onto a car sales store’s property only to have sex on the hood of a car. People get caught up in the moment, and also succumb to the need for excitement. The problem with having sex in a public place is that it is illegal, and will result in serious charges.

Public Indecency: Charged in Many Different Circumstances

Public Indecency – C.R.S. 18-7-301, is charged in many different circumstances in Arapahoe, Douglas, and Jefferson County. If a person lewdly exposes an intimate part of the body (not the genitals), for a sexual purpose, lewdly fondles or caresses another person, exposes their genitals for the purpose of causing alarm, or has sex in a public place, they will face Public Indecency charges. This crime is usually a class 1 petty offense, but if a person exposes their genitals for the purpose of alarm, it is charged as a class 1 misdemeanor offense.

Two Strikes, You’re a Sex Offender

While a class 1 petty offense doesn’t sound like a big deal, if you’ve been charged, you need the expertise of a knowledgeable attorney on your side. You may think you’ll just plead guilty to avoid jail time, but you need to know the facts. If you are convicted twice of Public Indecency in a certain amount of time, you will be required to register as a sex offender and undergo sex offender treatment. Now, it’s important to understand another, lesser-known situation where Public Indecency is charged – when a person urinates in public. So, if you’re convicted of Public Indecency for having sex on the hood of a car, then a couple years later, you pee in an alley, you’ll be a registered sex offender.

Why You Need a Lawyer for Public Indecency Charges

Your future is affected by a conviction; protect it by working with a lawyer. 

If you have been contacted by the police regarding Public Indecency charges, don’t hesitate to contact a hardworking criminal defense lawyer at our office for a free consultation. It’s important that you understand the consequences of pleading guilty, and take the steps necessary for protecting your future. Don’t let a district attorney bully you into pleading guilty; fight for your future by consulting a skilled attorney.

If you or a loved one has been charged with Public Indecency, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the O’Malley Law Office for a free consultation at 303-830-0880. Together, we can protect your future.

Jan 14

Are All Rapes the Same? Justice in Denver Sex Assault Cases

Sexual Assault is a crime that has received a lot of hype in the past decade. And, it became a hot topic for a reason. Many people were victimized by rape, and only in recent years have many people gotten justice. But, as society grows more concerned with rape, there is a dangerous shift we see as criminal defense lawyers in Denver, Jefferson, and Boulder County. Now, society lives by the mantra: “All rape is rape.” This idea sounds just, but in reality, it helps to create a scary new environment – one that is ripe for false accusations. Let’s take a look at how Sexual Assault cases are handled, and why a new approach needs to be adopted to account for modern society, and leaves room for the possibility that a person has been falsely accused.

In Reality, There are a Few Types of Rape

As skilled criminal defense lawyers with 40 years of combined courtroom experience in Arapahoe, Douglas, and Adams County, we have seen many different kinds of rape cases throughout the years. I read an article recently which perfectly illustrates our experience. In the UK, a well-known soccer player was convicted of rape, and was sentenced to 5 years in jail. The case is quite involved, but here’s the gist of the case:

The Case of the Soccer Player

The soccer player received a text from a friend, who said he had a woman with him. He met his friend at a hotel, where the other man was engaged in a sexual encounter with said woman. According to the soccer player, he then took his turn with the woman, before both men left the hotel for the night. The young woman says she woke up the next day with no remembrance of the night before. She says she didn’t consent to the soccer player’s advances, he said she was a willing participant.

This Rape Case isn’t Clear

There are a few things which are important to know when you look at a case like this. First, the girl’s actions are hardly examined in the courtroom. In a surveillance video from the hotel, the woman appears to be completely aware – she isn’t being led to the hotel against her will. Second, the hotel porter heard no noises from the hotel room which suggest she was being abused or held against her will. Thirdly, the day after the alleged assault, she Tweeted a friend (the tweets were deleted before the trial) about “making it big,” which suggest she was all right with the previous night’s engagements. Unfortunately, evidence which hurts the character of the victim isn’t always allowed in the courtroom. This isn’t justice, but it’s the way these cases tend to play out in today’s day and age.

Casual Hookups are the Norm in Today’s Society

Casual hookups, one-night stands, infidelity, and sexting with strangers is society’s new normal. It doesn’t mesh with how Sexual Assault and Unlawful Sexual Contact cases are handled, however.

Today’s society is a difficult one to mesh with the way Sexual Assault cases are handled. Casual hookups are the norm. One-night stands and sex with strangers are a fairly normal part of life. Watch a movie from the past few years, or catch a recent episode of the latest TV show, and you’ll see this lifestyle is normal. Even teenagers are engaging in sexual behavior (such as sexting) at younger ages than ever before. Unfortunately, this lifestyle creates an environment perfect for false accusations. All it takes is the word of one person – the alleged victim – and a person in Colorado and in many states in the U.S. could go to prison for the rest of their lives. Proof is no longer required as cases are decided on emotion. In the article I reference above, the author mentioned the story of the woman who was allegedly raped by the soccer player to a few of her friends. The other women (who were the same age as the alleged victim) had a different opinion than that of the court: They believe the girl knew what she was doing. One girl said that “lots of girls” from her school went to posh clubs to “try and bag themselves the ultimate prize: a footballer” (soccer player). Another girl said that it sounded like the alleged victim woke up, realized the mistake she had made, “felt really embarrassed about herself and called the police.” We have seen this often as defense lawyers; women who call the police out of guilt, revenge, or boredom. Unfortunately, false accusations can ruin another person’s life.

Lifetime Prison Sentences for Vague Rape Cases?

People can be sentenced to a lifetime in prison based on the world of the alleged victim alone.

In Colorado, the crime of Sexual Assault is subject to indeterminate sentencing. This means a person will be sentenced for an unlimited amount of time, e.g. 4 years to life. Their release depends on completing sex offender treatment, and a decision from the Colorado Parole Board about whether or not they are “fit” to rejoin society. For violent rape cases, this is an understandable sentence. But, when a person is sentenced to a possible life sentence based on the word of the alleged victim alone, it isn’t understandable. There is never much evidence in Sexual Assault cases, because there usually aren’t witnesses. And, there usually isn’t an argument about whether sex occurred, because in many cases, the encounter was consensual. All it takes is for one person to feel guilty or want revenge, and another person is arrested for a serious sex offense.

Why You Need a Lawyer for Sexual Assault Cases

As you can see, all rape cases aren’t the same. There are at least three types of rape cases, and the possibility of many more.

  1. There are cases of violent rape, where a person is victimized and brutalized.
  2. There are cases where the lines are vague – was the woman too drunk to consent? Or, did one person feel guilt the next morning and call the police?
  3. And then, there are cases of complete false accusation, where a person is accused even when nothing has happened.

We have seen all three types, and the last two are far more common than I care to discuss. I wrote about a case where a man had a date with a woman that ended in sex, and for no reason she called the police the next day. It isn’t justice to treat the victim in a violent rape case the same as someone who went out drinking with the intent to hookup, and then changed their mind the next day. This isn’t justice: Not for the defendant, and definitely not for true victims of rape. Because the criminal justice system hasn’t caught up to the “casual hookup” culture of today, and because they refuse to believe that there are different types of rape due to pressure from special interest groups, you need a lawyer if you have been accused. Don’t stand alone in court and try to defend yourself. You need an advocate who can fight on your behalf to ensure you get the best possible outcome in your case. Here at the O’Malley Law Office, we fight to win.

If you or a loved one has been contacted by the police regarding Sexual Assault accusations after a casual hookup, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the O’Malley Law Office for a free consultation at 303-830-0880.
Together, we can protect your future.

Jan 12

College Misconduct Boards Treat the Sexually Accused Unfairly

College misconduct board treats accused unfairly

Image Credit: Pixabay – Nemo

I read an article about how colleges mishandle accusations of Sexual Assault on college campuses, and how it is hurting the accused as well as the alleged

Across the nation, students accused of Sexual Assault are suing colleges for the way their cases were handled.

victims. According to the article, since 2011, more than 30 men have filed lawsuits against colleges across the U.S. after being found responsible for sexual misconduct. The reasons for these lawsuits lie in the way the colleges handled the investigation after these men were accused. Many of them have employed the same lawyer, who began helping young men who were falsely accused of sexual assault and sexual misconduct. These men are simply calling for change – they want to be treated fairly, and are frustrated by the way schools handled their cases. This is happening all across the U.S., even in Douglas, Boulder, and Arapahoe County, Colorado. One of the students attended the University of Colorado in Denver. Let’s take a look at why these men are suing their schools.

Students Accused of Sexual Misconduct Treated as Criminals

One man, named Kevin (name changed to protect privacy), fought for social justice at his college. He spoke often at his fraternity about their need to address Sexual Assaults on campus. All this changed one night, when he got drunk and texted a female friend, saying they should “hook up.” She said they could hang out, but didn’t want to have sex. He continued texting her incoherently, calling her derogatory names. The next morning, Kevin felt horrible after seeing what he had done (he didn’t remember sending the texts). So, he called the woman, apologized, and wanted to get to together to talk. The girl told him “not to worry about it.” The two remained friends, even working together in the student government. Nothing happened until a few months later, when the woman began working on a resolution that Kevin was against. Then, the woman informed authorities about the texts, and Kevin was banned from his student government meetings. He lost the resolution. Then, a few weeks later, two more students (who also worked on the resolution he was against) came forward – one accused Kevin of “nonconsensual kissing and touching” on their first day of college 4 years ago, and another accused him of kissing her without consent.

One man who was accused of sexual misconduct, said his case wasn’t heard, and that he was treated like “some kind of monster.”

College activists have fought for the “affirmative consent” concept, which means the accused has the burden of proof when showing the court that a sexual encounter was consensual. But, in Kevin’s case, his proof wasn’t considered. Adjudicators at his hearing didn’t think it was “relevant” that one of his accusers attended a dance with him only a few months after the alleged nonconsensual incident, or that the first woman said she wasn’t bothered by the text messages. They also didn’t find it relevant that one of his accusers remained good friends with Kevin after the alleged “nonconsensual kissing,” even asking Kevin to live with her over the summer. Kevin also wasn’t allowed to call witnesses, have a lawyer present at the hearing, or have his own copy of the complaint file for preparation of his defense. Instead, he was required to write his account of his actions (even though it was 4 years previous), but he didn’t know exactly what he was being accused of because he didn’t have a copy of the women’s complaint until five days before the hearing. This is all too common. Another student mentioned in the article, who is filing a lawsuit against a college says that the police investigation in his case was “in good faith. But the disciplinary hearing was not. They treated me as if I was some kind of monster.”

Men’s Lives are Ruined by Unfair Treatment

Statistics have shown that the so-called ‘rape culture’ doesn’t exist.

Kevin’s life was harmed by the way the college treated his case. He moved to D.C. after an unsuccessful appeal, and was hired by a member of Congress. But, about a month into working, an anonymous person called in, demanding to know why a member of Congress would hire a person found guilty of multiple sexual misconduct occurrences. He was let go, even though his boss “didn’t know if the claims were true.” Now on antidepressants and going through counselling, Kevin struggles, wondering what the college wanted from him. “At first I thought they didn’t want me to participate in campus activities. Then I thought they didn’t want me to graduate. Now they don’t want me to have a job or be part of society. Do they want me to commit suicide? Is that what they want me to do? What is the endgame?” The sad thing is, many men are being falsely accused at colleges. This is due to the general belief that we live in a “rape culture.” Thankfully, statistics have shown that the so-called rape culture doesn’t exist. Yet, the accused are still treated as if they are criminals. We have written about college students here in Colorado being treated unfairly by their schools; one of them attended Western State University.

Why You Need a Lawyer if You’ve Been Falsely Accused

Don’t stand alone in court if you’ve been falsely accused – work with an attorney who can help you get a favorable outcome in your case.

Kevin says he is furious about the current process of how schools deal with accusations of sexual misconduct. “Activists are furious with the current process, but so am I. It’s clear that colleges are inept at handling the disciplinary process. A kangaroo court of untrained amateurs was commissioned with the power to literally control my fate. To me, it was a mockery of the process we’re supposed to respect.” As sex crimes defense attorneys with 40 years of combined courtroom experience, the skilled lawyers at the O’Malley Law office couldn’t agree more with Kevin’s perspective on how the accused are treated by colleges in Adams, Denver, and Jefferson County. Courts often have similar shortcomings. If you’ve been falsely accused or overcharged, contact an attorney immediately to begin working on your defense. You need to protect your future, and here at the O’Malley Law Office, we fight to win!

If you or a loved one has been falsely accused of sexual misconduct on a college campus, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the O’Malley Law Office for a free consultation at 303-830-0880. Together, we can protect your future.

Jan 09

Uber Driver Faces Sexual Assault Accusations: Drivers & Passengers Must Read

An Uber driver has been accused of Sexual Assault.

Image Credit: Pixabay – OpenClips

Uber, a company that created an app which allows people to instantly find a nonprofessional taxi-driver in the area, is under scrutiny. They’ve had issues in the past regarding their pricing system, but this time, it’s much more serious. I read in the news the other day that a former Uber drive has been charged with Sexual Assault – C.R.S. 18-3-402. A former passenger of his has made allegations that he attacked her during the ride. This article brought a couple things to mind: First, how easy it would be for a taxi driver to rape someone. Second, how easy it would be for someone to falsely accuse a taxi driver of rape. Let’s take a look at this situation in order to determine how passengers and taxi drivers alike can protect themselves in Denver, Arapahoe, and El Paso County, and across Colorado.

Did the Uber Driver Rape His Passenger?

Ultimately, we don’t know whether or not the woman’s accusations are true. But, it serves as a good reminder to us all that we need to protect ourselves form harm and false accusations. Read this blog for tips for drivers as well as passengers.

A former Uber driver has been accused of raping his passenger. According to the news article, the alleged victim says she arranged for a ride through her Uber app one evening. The car arrived around 3 am, and she got into the back seat and fell asleep. Reportedly, after exiting the highway, the driver stopped the car and asked the woman to get into the front, because he was having a hard time finding the address. The woman agreed, moved to the front seat and fell asleep (she was intoxicated). She awoke when the driver pulled into an alley behind an apartment building and reportedly grabbed her hand and stuck it in his own pants. Apparently, the woman wasn’t alarmed by this, removed her hand, and fell back asleep. When she awoke the third time, she was in the driver’s apartment, and the man was allegedly assaulting her. After the assault, he reportedly drove her back to her own home, saying he had “made her happy.” GPS coordinates taken from the woman’s phone show that it was at the man’s apartment, so this unbelievable story is partly true. The woman was also able to identify photos of the man’s apartment, and picked him out of the lineup. All of this is slightly unbelievable; if the woman was as drunk and impaired as she says she was, how does she remember so much? We have come across many situations like this as skilled criminal defense lawyers. The problem is that it is her word against his that the sexual encounter was not consensual. It’s difficult when it comes to Sexual Assault cases: Often, there is no argument that two people had sex, the problem lies in whether or not they both agreed. In some cases, the women agree to a sexual encounter, and then regret it and make accusations later. Ultimately, we don’t know whether or not the Uber driver raped his passenger, but it provides a good opportunity for us all to learn how to protect ourselves from harm or false accusations. It is never smart to be alone with a stranger.

Drivers Need to Be Careful

Taxi and limousine drivers need to be careful. It’s easy to make false accusations, and drivers make easy targets. Because of this, it’s important to take steps to protect yourself if you are a driver. My tips would be to be as professional as possible, check in with other people during long drives, and never ask a passenger to sit in the front seat.

Passengers Need to Be Careful

Passengers also need to be careful. As you can see from the story above, it wouldn’t be difficult for a driver to take advantage of you. Because of this, it is important to be careful and wary when you employing a driver. Try to carpool with other people instead of going alone. A designated driver continues to make sense.

Accused of Sexual Assault? Why You Need a Lawyer

If you’ve been accused of Sexual Assault in Jefferson, Douglas, or Adams County, don’t hesitate to contact an hard-hitting criminal defense attorney to represent you in court. You need the advocacy of a lawyer who knows how the system works and will gather evidence to tell your side of the story. Don’t give in and plead guilty or work with an overwhelmed public defender. Contact an affordable attorney who will fight to protect your future. Here at the O’Malley Law Office, we fight to win.

If you or a loved one has been accused of Sexual Assault like the Uber driver, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the O’Malley Law Office for a free consultation at 303-830-0880. Together, we can protect your future.

Jan 07

What is Jeopardy in Sex Crime Cases in Denver?

A woman is convicted of murdering her husband. She spends six years in prison before getting out on parole. She believes her husband framed her, and is still alive. Full of revenge, she decides to hunt him down and kill him, knowing she’ll get away with it. Why is she so sure? She knows she can’t be re-prosecuted for his murder because of a rule in criminal law called ‘Double Jeopardy.’

This is a plot for a movie called “Double Jeopardy,” starring Ashley Judd and Tommy Lee Jones. The story might seem unbelievable, but there really is a law that protects people from going to trial for the same thing twice in Adams, Denver, and Jefferson County, and across Colorado. It is called double jeopardy. Let’s take a look at this Constitutional protection in order to understand just how it works.

What is Jeopardy in Criminal Cases in Colorado?

Jeopardy is a principle in criminal cases in Arapahoe, El Paso, and Douglas County, and throughout Colorado, that goes into effect when the jury is sworn in, or when the first witness takes the stand. It is founded on the concept that people shouldn’t be tried for the same crime twice (unless the defense is able to gather enough evidence for appeal). It doesn’t matter how a case ended – whether a person was found ‘guilty’ or ‘not guilty’ at trial. This rule can be found in the U.S. Constitution’s Fifth Amendment. Our forefather’s recorded a protection that prevents citizens from “twice being put in jeopardy of life or limb.”  The government only has one shot at convicting at trial. If the District Attorney is unable to get a conviction, or they aren’t able to procure a key witness and they lose, they don’t get a second chance. Often, DAs dismiss cases if they don’t think they have a good shot at winning, hoping to take it to trial later (of course, they must also consider the Statute of Limitations when waiting to go to trial), simply because they don’t want to lose their chances at a conviction.

This law was instated to prevent people from ‘twice being put in jeopardy of life or limb.’

Exceptions to the Jeopardy Rule

There are exceptions to the jeopardy rule, however. If you believe the jeopardy rule is key in your criminal case, be sure to contact a skilled criminal defense lawyer who will determine whether this rule is applicable. Here are a few exceptions to the jeopardy rule:

  • When an acquittal is procured through fraud, or other similar conduct (such as intimidating a witness), jeopardy doesn’t come into play.
  • The judge in your case declared a mistrial because there was a hung jury who couldn’t reach a unanimous verdict, jeopardy has no bearing.
  • Jeopardy will not help you if another court (jurisdiction) is examining your conduct under different laws. E.g., if you were acquitted of Sexual Assault in Gilpin County, but your case was retried in federal court.

Why You Need a Lawyer for your Sex Crime Case

If you believe jeopardy might come into play in your case, contact an experienced lawyer at our office for a free consultation to discuss your situation and protect your future.

If you have been charged with a sex offense, and you believe jeopardy might come into play in your case, contact a skilled criminal defense lawyer at our office for a free consultation. We have 40 years of experience in the courtroom, and we have a good grasp on how jeopardy comes into play. Don’t try to fight this legal battle on your own. The lawyers at the O’Malley Law Office have a passion for defending people accused of crimes, and we fight to win.

If you or a loved one has been charged with a sex offense, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the O’Malley Law Office for a free consultation at 303-830-0880. Together, we can protect your future.

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