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3 types of sexual offenses in Georgia

On Behalf of | Jul 5, 2024 | Sex Crimes & Child Exploitation

A sexual crime accusation can potentially damage your reputation and affect your present and future employment opportunities, relationships and overall well-being. 

While sexual crimes may seem self-explanatory, it is important to understand how they are defined and categorized under Georgia law. Here are three classes of sexual offenses.

1. Child molestation

This involves any sexual act with a child, typically under the age of 16, including indecent exposure, lewd behavior or any form of physical contact for the purpose of sexual gratification. Child molestation charges in Georgia are serious and can result in significant penalties, including extended imprisonment and compulsory registration as a sex offender upon conviction.

2. Public indecency

Acts or behaviors that involve exposing one’s genitals or engaging in indecent acts in public places or where others are present can be categorized as public indecency under Georgia law. This offense can include acts such as public nudity, indecent exposure or engaging in sexual acts in public places. Public indecency charges can lead to fines, probation and even imprisonment depending on the circumstances and prior criminal history.

3. Rape and statutory rape

While they may seem similar, rape and statutory rape are distinct under Georgia law. Rape involves non-consensual sexual intercourse with an individual through force, coercion or when the victim is incapacitated. It applies regardless of the victim’s age and can result in severe criminal penalties and lengthy prison terms.

Statutory rape, on the other hand, pertains to sexual intercourse with a minor who is under the age of consent, which in Georgia is generally 16 years old. Even if the minor consents, the law considers them legally incapable of providing consent due to their age. Statutory rape charges can lead to imprisonment and mandatory sex offender registration upon conviction, depending on the age difference between the parties involved.

When facing sexual offense charges, it is important to seek legal guidance promptly to build a robust defense.