Oklahoma Sex Crimes Lawyer
People charged with a sexual offense face not only devastating consequences to their personal and professional lives, but also fierce prosecution from the State of Oklahoma. Sex crimes are highly publicized and expose both the accused and their family to intense scrutiny in the community.
Oklahoma Sex Crimes
Sex crimes provided by Oklahoma statute include, but are not limited to:
- Rape (First Degree or Second Degree)
- Spousal Rape in the First Degree
- Rape by Instrumentation (First or Second Degree)
- Sexual Battery
- Lewd Acts
- Indecent Exposure
- Peeping Tom
- Prostitution (Engaging or Soliciting)
- Forcible Oral Sodomy
Penalties for Sex Crimes
The Oklahoma Legislature has found that the privacy interests of sex offenders are less important than the State’s interest in public safety because sex offenders allegedly pose a high risk of re-offending. As such, if convicted of a specific sex crime (Title 21 of Oklahoma Statutes), the offender faces not only imprisonment, monetary penalties, and/or civil damages, but must also register as a sex offender on the Oklahoma Sex Offender Registry.
Oklahoma Sex Offender Registry
Prior to release from prison (or upon sentencing if defendant receives a probationary sentence), the Oklahoma Department of Corrections (or the sentencing judge on day of pronouncement of sentence) will determine and assign a risk level for those convicted of certain sex crimes:
- Level 1 (Low): Person poses low danger to the community and will not likely engage in criminal sexual conduct= 15 YEARS.
- Level 2 (Moderate): Person poses moderate danger to the community and may continue to engage in criminal sexual conduct= 25 YEARS.
- Level 3 (High): Person poses a serious danger to the community and will continue to engage in criminal sexual conduct= LIFETIME REGISTRATION.
Removal from Oklahoma Sex Offender Registry: Title 57, Section 583(E)
Pursuant to Title 57, Section 583(E) of Oklahoma Statutes, if you have been assigned Level 1 and have registered for ten (10) years, you may be eligible for removal from the Oklahoma Sex Offender Registry. The requirements are:
- Level 1 AND
- Registered for 10 years AND
- Not arrested for any felony or misdemeanor offense since being released from confinement AND
- Not convicted for any felony or misdemeanor offense since being released from confinement.
Any Level 1 offender meeting these requirements may petition the district court in the county where the offender resides to remove the offender’s level designation and allow the offender to no longer be subject to the registration requirements of the Oklahoma Sex Offenders Registration Act.
Am I Eligible for Probation?
According to Title 22, Section 991(c)(G), deferred adjudication does not apply to defendants who enter a plea of guilty or nolo contendere to a sex offense required by law to register pursuant to the Oklahoma Sex Offenders Registration Act. However, the defendant may be eligible for another form of probation, known as a suspended sentence, whereby the court immediately pronounces guilt but suspends the defendant’s sentence to serve time on probation rather than time in jail or the penitentiary.
When Does Registration Actually Begin?
Many offenders are confused as to when registration actually begins. According to the Oklahoma Sex Offenders Registration Act, registration begins from the date of completion of his/her sentence, i.e. the day offender completes all prison time, probation or parole of the sentence.
Offenders Who Received Deferred Sentences Prior to March 20, 2000
Prior to March 20, 2000, defendants who pled guilty or nolo contendere to sex crimes requiring registration were eligible for deferred sentences. Upon successful completion of his/her deferred sentence, the defendant became eligible for discharge without a court judgment of guilt and an expungement pursuant to 22 O.S. Section 991(c). Title 57, Section 582(E) provides that the Oklahoma Sex Offenders Registration Act does not apply to any person who has received a criminal history records expungement for a conviction in another state for a crime which, if committed in Oklahoma, would be a crime requiring registration. However, those receiving deferred sentences and 991(c) expungements in the State of Oklahoma before March 20, 2000 must continue to register.
There is a very strong argument that Title 57, Section 582(E) of Oklahoma Statutes violates the offender’s constitutional rights to equal protection and due process of law under the 5th and 14th Amendments of the U.S. Constitution, and of Article 2, Sections 2 and 7, and Article 5, Section 59 of the Oklahoma Constitution. The Equal Protection Clause is clearly designed to assure that those persons similarly situated with respect to a governmental action should be treated similarly. Stay tuned- this issue is currently before the Oklahoma Supreme Court!
DO NOT BE LABELED A SEX OFFENDER!
If you have been charged with a sex crime, it’s very important to retain an attorney who will zealously fight to protect your legal rights. Do not be labeled a “SEX OFFENDER”!! Call Elliott C. Crawford immediately at (405) 519-3796 to schedule your consultation.