Sex Crimes Information Center

Non Contact Sex Offenses

A number of sex offenses with very serious consequences do not involve any actual physical contact with a “victim.” At the Meryhew Law Group we see an increasing number of clients charged with offenses after having talking about sex online with a fictitious teenager who turns out to be a Police Detective, as well as a growing number of child pornography related offenses. These so-called “non-contact” sex offenses may seem like no big thing, but in fact law enforcement has made it a priority to go after these individuals.

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Voluntary Sex Offenses

The law makes it a crime to have sexual contact with a minor or a prostitute even if the contact is perfectly consensual. At the Meryhew Law Group we see a growing number of cases involving sexually active minors who can be very aggressive, and deceptive, in their pursuit of sexual contact. The Internet has revolutionized the way teenagers think about and approach sexuality, and those teens, as well as Detectives pretending to be those teens, can be found all over the Internet actively engaged in sexual talk and activities. The Internet has also revolutionized prostitution and the ways that sex workers make contact with their prospective customers. Back Page, Craigslist and a large number of local web sites offer sex for hire services that sometimes lead to Police stings and arrest. Even though the minor or the sex worker has consented to the sexual contact, this still remains a serious crime. Particularly if the prostitute turns out to actually be a minor.

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False Allegations of Child Sexual Abuse

False allegations of child sexual abuse are devastating to the person accused and can have lifelong consequences even when the allegations are not proven. Research has shown that a significant number of these false allegations occur during divorce and custody battles, and also strongly suggests that adults can and do influence children to say things that aren’t true. Defending against allegations that are rooted in coaching, and the creation of false memories, is challenging and complicated.

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The Meryhew Law Group in the Media

One of Brad Meryhew’s cases was dismissed by the Prosecution a week before trial based on the inability of the State to prove the charges. The Prosecutor credited Brad’s interview of the complaining witness as the basis for the dismissal of the charges, saying “Although she gave a very vivid description to her mother and to law enforcement, a few months later, during a defense attorney interview, her recollection was a lot more vague, and some of the finer details were escaping her recollection.”

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Sex Offenses Resource Links

Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers
http://www.atsa.com/

Washington Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers
http://www.watsa.org/

The Freedom Project
http://freedomprojectseattle.org/

Once Fallen
http://www.oncefallen.com/

Reform Sex Offender Laws, Inc.
http://nationalrsol.org/

Washington Association of Sheriffs & Police Chiefs
Registered Sex Offender Resource Center
https://www.waspc.org/stage.dll/$

Washington Indeterminate Sentence Review Board
http://www.doc.wa.gov/isrb/

Center for Sex Offender Management
Frequently Asked Questions about Sexual Assault and Sex Offenders
http://www.csom.org/faq/

Office of Justice Programs, Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking (SMART Office)
http://ojp.gov/smart/sorna.htm

Centers for Disease Control & Prevention
http://www.cdc.gov/ViolencePrevention/index.html

National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
http://www.missingkids.com/home

King County Sexual Assault Resource Center
888-998-6423 24-Hour Resource Line
http://www.kcsarc.org/

Washington Coalition of Sexual Assault Programs
http://www.wcsap.org/

Lifewire, formerly Eastside Domestic Violence Program
http://www.edvp.org/

Domestic Abuse Women’s Network (DAWN)
http://dawnonline.org/get-help/resources/

Harborview Center for Sexual Assault & Traumatic Stress
http://depts.washington.edu/hcsats/resources.html

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