When you’re accused of a serious crime, it can feel like the whole world’s against you. However, there’s at least one person you can count on to hear your side of the story: your criminal defense attorney. Need help? Contact us to schedule a consultation.
Solicitation of a minor is a felony crime in Minnesota.
It doesn’t matter how it happened, whether you met online or in person, or whether the minor lied about their age. If you were caught soliciting a minor, you are in serious legal trouble. And not just legal trouble—if convicted, you could lose your family, your good reputation, your job and your freedom.
Your best chance of surviving this charge with your life still in-tact is working with a trusted solicitation of a minor attorney. An experienced lawyer will craft a defense that works with the unique aspects of your case to prevent you from suffering harsh penalties for a genuine mistake.
Keep reading to learn about the forms of solicitation of a minor, the potential penalties for each and why you need an aggressive criminal defense attorney by your side throughout this difficult process.
At Toepfer at Law, we know that everyone is capable of making serious mistakes. If you’re ready to prepare your defense with a compassionate attorney who understands the ins-and-outs of criminal defense in Minnesota, give us a call at (320) 497-4416 today.
An adult doesn’t need to engage in sexual activity with an underage person in order to be charged with solicitation of a minor. They can be charged for the mere suggestion or proposal of sexual activity, in-person or online.
Solicitation of a minor is when an adult solicits a child or someone they believe is a child, to engage in sexual content with the intent to following through, according to Minnesota Statute 609.352. It goes on to define solicitation as “commanding, entreating, or attempting to persuade a specific person in person, by telephone, by letter, or by computerized or other electronic means.”
Electronic solicitation is the most common form of solicitation of a minor. It is typically revealed in one of the following two forms:
It’s important to note that whether solicitation of a minor took place in-person or online, being mistaken about the minor’s age is generally not a defense that will work.
If you’re convicted of soliciting a minor, the severity of your punishment will depend on the age of the minor you attempted to engage with.
If the minor was 16-17 years old, you could face up to five years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines. For minors 13-15 years old, the punishment is up to 10 years in jail and $20,000 in fines; for those under 13, penalties include up to 20 years in jail and $40,000 in fines.
Defendants who are convicted of solicitation with a minor must also register as sex offenders, likely attend sex offender treatment programs, have their internet activity monitored or restricted and lose their rights to vote and own a gun.
An experienced solicitation of a minor defense lawyer should be able to help you find a defense that works well with the details of your case.
For example, if you met a minor in a club that was supposed to be 18 and up, you may have a compelling case that you believed the minor was an adult. Or, if you were part of a solicitation sting on the internet and law enforcement encouraged you to make sexual advances, you may be able to argue you were the victim of police entrapment.
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