Orange County Child Molestation Lawyer – Defenses to Penal Code 647.6 PC
Child molestation attorneys with over 40 years of experience
When charged with a potentially serious crime such as annoying or molesting a child, you need a California criminal defense attorney that will fight for you using an effective defense strategy. There are several defenses available that could result in a dismissal or reduction of your charge. Here are some successful defenses that our Orange County child molestation lawyer at Wallin & Klarich can raise on your behalf:
PC 647.6 Defense 1: Good faith belief that the victim was 18 years of age or older
You are not guilty of the crime of annoying or molesting a child under California Penal Code section 647.6 if you reasonably and actually believed that the victim was age 18 or older. In order to assert this good faith defense, you must have actually believed that the victim was 18 years or older. This is a subjective standard in which the jury will determine whether or not you personally believed the victim was 18 or older at the time of the offense. The jury must also determine that your belief was objectively reasonable. In other words, a reasonable person in your shoes and under the same circumstances must have believed that the victim was 18 years or older. If both of these components are met, your Orange County Child Molestation lawyer can argue that you had a good faith belief that the victim was of legal age and therefore you cannot be convicted of annoying or molesting a child.
PC 647.6 Defense 2: Your conduct was not directed at a minor
In order to be convicted of annoying or molesting a child, your conduct must be directed at a minor who was under the age of 18 at the time of the offense. If your conduct was actually directed at an adult and a child was present at the time of the offense, it is possible that your actions were misinterpreted as being directed at the minor. It is also possible that your conduct was not intended to be witnessed by anyone and yet a minor observed you engaging in behavior that might be considered offensive or disturbing. In either case, your Orange County Child Molestation attorney can argue that you conduct was not directed at a minor and therefore you cannot be convicted of this offense.
647.6 Defense 3: Your conduct was not motivated by an unnatural or abnormal sexual interest in the minor
Your conduct must have been motivated by an unnatural or abnormal sexual interest in the minor victim in order to be convicted of annoying or molesting a child. Often times, a young child will accuse an innocent person of annoying or molesting a child for innocent actions that have nothing to do with a sexual interest in the child. If your conduct was not motivated by sexual desire or interest in the minor, you cannot be convicted of this offense.
For example: You are taking a stroll in the park when a young girl playing “tag” trips and falls at your feet. You help the young girl up, but accidentally brush her breast in the process. Being taught that any touching from strangers is wrong, the child throws a fit and soon the police arrive and arrest you for annoying or molesting a child. Although your conduct may be considered offensive, it was motivated by a gratuitous intent and NOT a sexual interest in the child, and therefore you cannot be convicted of this offense.
647.6 Defense 4: Your conduct would not have disturbed, irritated, offended or injured a normal person
Your conduct must have disturbed, irritated, offended or injured a normal person in the victim’s position. Since this is an objective standard, the victim does not need to be personally offended or disturbed in order to convict you of this offense. On the other hand if the victim is hypersensitive and a reasonable person in his or her position would not have been offended by your actions, your Orange County child molestation lawyer at Wallin & Klarich can argue that this objective standard has not been met. It is important to note that young children have a tendency to exaggerate or blow out of proportion actions that would normally not offend a reasonable person. Because of this, your defense attorney can conduct an independent investigation into the minor’s history and request a psychology evaluation to determine the validity of the accusations against you.
Consent is not a defense for child molestation
Consent is never a defense to annoying or molesting a child under California Penal Code section 647.6. Under the law, a minor under 18 years of age is not capable of giving valid consent due to their inability to appreciate the risks and circumstances associated with such a decision. Therefore even if the victim consented to your conduct, this will not act as a defense to a charge of annoying or molesting a child.
If you are looking for a California child molestation lawyer to represent you, Wallin & Klarich can help. With over 40 years of experience and offices in Orange County, Los Angeles, San Diego, San Bernardino, Riverside, Ventura, West Covina and Victorville, our highly skilled and professional criminal defense attorneys will conduct a thorough investigation of the facts and passionately argue that your case should be dismissed.
Let us show you how we protect our own. Call us today at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or fill out or confidential form. We will be there when you call.