When it comes to criminal charges in the State of Illinois, sex crimes come with some of the most severe penalties that a person can face. While a person can obviously be convicted for committing sexual assault or some other form of a sex crime, the punishment doesn't stop at the person who committed the crime; you can be convicted of a sex crime if you arranged for a person to commit a sex offense. This charge is called indecent solicitation, and conviction of such a crime can have a devastating impact on a person's life.
If you've been charged with indecent solicitation of an adult in Illinois, the team of criminal defense attorneys at Dolci & Weiland are standing by to go to battle with you to fight against your charge. We believe it's important to educate yourself on the charge that you face, along with the repercussions that follow the conviction of this charge.
Indecent Solicitation of an Adult Laws in Illinois
Illinois criminal law defines indecent solicitation in 720 ILCS 5/11/6.5. The law states that a person commits indecent solicitation of an adult if the person knowingly arranges for a person 17 or older to commit an act of sexual conduct or sexual penetration with a person under the age of 17.
A person can "arrange" for a person to commit these acts by oral or written communication by telephone, computer, or other electronic means such as a tablet.
Overview of the statutory elements of indecent solicitation of an adult; potential penalties (include registration as a sex offender); potential defenses
Penalties for a Conviction of Indecent Solicitation of an Adult
The penalties that a person can face upon conviction of indecent solicitation of an adult depend on two factors:
- The age of the minor child involved; and
- The act the person arranges to be committed.
A person who arranges for an adult to commit an act of sexual penetration with a person under the age of 13 faces the most severe punishment upon conviction: this crime is a Class X felony, which is one of the most severe class of crime that a person can be charged within the State of Illinois. A person can't be sentenced to probation if found guilty of the crime, and the court must impose a mandatory minimum sentence between 6 and 30 years in prison.
A person who arranges for an adult to commit an act of sexual penetration with a minor between 13 and 16 years of age also faces a severe punishment if convicted--this crime is considered a Class 1 felony. Conviction of this offense can land a person in prison between 4 and 15 years and can be forced to pay a fine of up to $25,000.
An individual who is charged with soliciting an adult to commit an act of sexual conduct faces a Class 2 felony. Conviction of this offense is punishable by a prison sentence of 3 to 7 years, along with a fine of up to $25,000.
There is only one circumstance in which a person can be convicted of indecent solicitation of an adult without facing a felony on his or her record. A person who arranges for a person to engage in an act of sexual conduct with a minor between the age of 13 and 16 will not face a felony but will face a Class A misdemeanor if convicted.
The Illinois Sex Offender Registry
It may surprise some readers to know that when it comes to conviction of a sex crime such as indecent solicitation of an adult, prison time isn't always the most severe punishment that a person can face. A prison sentence, although severe, has a definite ending date, at which you can begin to rebuild your life. Those who commit a sex offense in Illinois are also subject to a punishment that has no end date--forcible registration on the Illinois sex offender registry.
The sex offender registry is an online database that displays extremely personal details about a person who has been convicted of a sex crime in Illinois. Along with a photo of the individual, the registry displays the person's charge, the age of the victim, and identifying information such as the person's address. This isn't only embarrassing to the person listed on the registry--it can also make the person a target for people who want to retaliate against the individual for the crime they are accused of committing. This registry is public for anyone who wants to look it up, and the social stigma of being placed on the registry can prove to be a far more long-lasting punishment than a prison sentence.
Potential Defenses to a Solicitation Charge
If you're facing a charge of indecent solicitation of an adult, it's critical to seek the help of a criminal defense attorney rather than trying to fight your charge on your own. Depending on the circumstances surrounding your charge, your defense attorney may be able to assert a legal defense to mitigate the punishment that you face if convicted. In some cases, a legal defense can be so detrimental to a prosecutor's case against you that your charges may be dropped altogether.
Facing a Charge of Indecent Solicitation in Illinois? We're Here to Help
If you have been charged with indecent solicitation of an adult in Illinois, the importance of securing representation from an experienced criminal defense attorney can't be overstated. The repercussions of a solicitation conviction don't just end after your sentence is served; a conviction can impact the rest of your life. At Dolci & Weiland, our criminal defense team is dedicated to providing you with the quality representation you need to fight against your charge.
When you're equipped with a criminal defense attorney who knows the ins and outs of criminal law in Illinois, you stand the best chance at obtaining a positive outcome. Don't try to fight your solicitation charge on your own; to speak with a member of our legal team about your charge, fill out an online case evaluation form or call the office nearest to you today. To reach our DuPage office, call (630) 261-9098, or for our downtown Chicago location, call (312) 238-9007.