Being arrested and charged with prostitution is a serious crime in every state. It’s illegal, and it’s going to cost those found guilty of prostitution more than they might imagine. If you or a loved one is charged with the act of prostitution, it’s wise to call an attorney to help with the process. It’s a serious crime, and it’s one that comes with serious penalties. The laws are slightly different in every state, but the outcome might be worse without an attorney present to help you fight your case.
What is prostitution?
Prostitution is the act of exchanging sexual acts, favors, or intercourse for profit. It’s illegal in every state with the exception of certain counties only in Nevada. Even there, the act is strictly regulated by the state government and punishable by law if these regulations are ignored or broken. Every state has different laws regarding the sale of sex, and some states even consider the act of buying sex a crime in itself.
Penalties for Engaging in Prostitution
Depending on the laws where you live, how many times you’ve been arrested in the past, and what you were doing when you were arrested, the penalties for engaging in prostitution are strict. There are fines, potential jail time, probation, and other punishments. All crimes are different, and each one has different penalties.
It’s common for those arrested for prostitution without a prior criminal record to receive a lesser sentence provided no one was hurt or killed in the act of engaging in paid-for sexual favors. Someone with a long criminal history might be more severely punished for this due to their previous record.
Defense Against Prostitution
Being arrested for prostitution can have serious consequences, but there are defenses an attorney might use to help drop your charges or have them minimized. Each defense is different, and the one used depends on your personal situation.
Entrapment – Perhaps you were given no choice but to prostitute by someone who was threatening you or the people you love. If this is the case, you can be proved innocent of all charges.
Mistake – Did you get arrested for prostitution when you were not actually engaging in the act? Sometimes mistakes are made, such as mistaking a woman taking money from a man on the street as prostitution when in reality he owed her for borrowing money another time. The money exchanging hands might not have anything to do with sex.
Lack of Evidence – In many cases, the best potential defense is a certain lack of evidence. It’s not always possible to show evidence that someone was eliciting or selling sex for money. For example, a prostitute who was on the street offering favors to a man who then called the police probably didn’t leave any evidence behind. There is his word and her word, but there is no evidence there was any actual sex exchanged for money.
No Money Exchanged Hands – If there is sex exchanged for money and both acts are exchanged, it’s difficult to argue. However, if the client never pays the prostitute, it’s not considered prostitution. In this instance, it’s nothing more than consensual intercourse.
How can an attorney help?
An attorney knows the law, how it works, and what works for you. When you’re arrested for prostitution, you’re going to have your Miranda Rights read to you. These rights allow you the opportunity to call an attorney to work on your behalf. It’s wise you do this when the offer is given so you have a better chance at winning your case.
An attorney knows how to look at the police reports and the arrest record to see if everything was handled to the letter of the law. He or she knows what questions to ask to make sure everything was handled accordingly, and they know how to argue your case efficiently in a manner you might not think of on your own. They also know how to ask for reduced charges, make deals, and work for your best interests. Call an attorney to get the best chance at freedom following your arrest.