You’re supposed to be safe when you visit your doctor. These are professionals dedicated to our good health and taking care of us when at our worst. We trust them because they’ve had to undergo so much training, and we trust them as people because you can’t have a job where you help others for a living and be a bad person – right?
Those are just some of the things that might have been going through your head recently if you heard about the Naperville doctor whose license was suspended after he was charged with three felony counts of sexual assault and five counts of sexual abuse from 2012 to 2014. Going through the horror of a sex crime is bad enough, but when it happens at the hands of someone you know and trust, the violation can seem that much worse.
But what you always have to remember in these kinds of cases is that a charge is not definitive proof that anything actually happened. It’s quite possible that this doctor did something that he believed to be harmless, but it wasn’t interpreted that way by his patients.
In fact, if you look at the language of the accusations, they allege that he “inappropriately touched or fondled” his victims. The job of a doctor is to touch his patients. Until more facts come out, we have very little on which to judge whether or not his actions were, in fact, “inappropriate” and should see this man as innocent until proven guilty.
Unfortunately, that’s not how it works in the real world. When someone accuses you of a crime, you immediately lose trust and credibility, and your reputation – both professionally and personally – can be irrevocably damaged. That’s why it’s so important to protect yourself and fight back as early on as possible.
How Can You Fight Chicago Sex Crime Charges?
The first thing you absolutely have to do is hire a knowledgeable and experienced sex crimes attorney in the area with a track record of success. Prosecutors take these kinds of charges very seriously, so you can be sure they’re going to use every trick up their sleeve to see that you’re convicted – you want someone who understands these tactics and knows how to beat them.
Misconduct from the police. Were you lured into soliciting an illegal sexual activity? There are very strict rules that law enforcement officials are required to follow when attempting to catch supposed sexual predators. Many times these decoys will continue to push their targets to engage in the activity, even after they’ve initially refused, until they simply give in. If they went too far, you may be able to use this to fight the charges.
Get the evidence suppressed. If the case against you is based on evidence obtained by violating the Fourth Amendment’s ban on unreasonable searches and seizures, a good lawyer will know how to argue to ensure it is excluded from the case. In other words, they won’t be able to use it against you.
Process errors. Physical evidence in sex crimes is often based on results that come from testing and labs. As wonderful as this technology can sometimes be though, there are a number of ways the results can be negatively impacted. You need a smart attorney who can bring potential issues to light and cast doubt on the evidence.
Exposing motivations. It’s not nice to say, but the simple truth is there are many people out there who make up sex crime allegations for their own reasons. Sometimes they may feel guilty or embarrassed about engaging in the sexual activity. Or attempt to use the charges as leverage so they gain an advantage in another way. Whatever the situation, you need a lawyer who can dig deep to come up with the truth.
Of course, the best way to fight sex crimes charges is to avoid them altogether. Take care in how you interact with others, don’t do anything that can be misinterpreted as a sexual advance or act, and always conduct yourself professionally. Do that, and even if someone does try to accuse you of a sex crime, a qualified lawyer should be able to help you fight and win.
About the Author:
Andrew M. Weisberg is a former felony prosecutor who now serves as a defense attorney in the greater Chicago area. He has extensive experience in handling all types of criminal cases, from sex offenses and domestic violence to retail theft-related crimes, Murder, and drug crimes.