A Grand Rapids sex crime lawyer is the advocate you need if you are accused of sexual assault, rape or other sex crime charges. The sooner you contact a Michigan sex crimes defense attorney, the sooner your lawyer can start defending you so that you may not face conviction, incarceration and registration as a sex offender. Miel & Carr PLC provides aggressive defense for people accused of sex crimes in Michigan.
Sex crimes carry heavy penalties in Michigan. People convicted of criminal sexual conduct may be sentenced to a term of life in prison. Even lesser charges can mean serving a prison term of a decade or more and being forced to wear a GPS tether, perhaps for the rest of your life. Many people convicted of sex crimes in Michigan are also required to register as a sex offender for the rest of their life.
DNA Evidence in Sex Crimes
Clearly, these penalties are serious and undesirable. Many sex crime convictions are the result of DNA evidence and witness testimony. DNA evidence is considered scientific and reliable. However, that’s only under ideal circumstances. There are many reasons why your DNA might have been found at a crime scene, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that you committed a crime. However, the mere presence of your DNA can be enough to put the prosecution on your trail. They’ll come after you, and that’s why you need a Michigan sex crimes defense attorney.
Collecting DNA Evidence
Your DNA is detectable in your blood, saliva, semen, sweat, hair and more. If the police find these substances at a crime scene and match it to yours, it’s a foregone conclusion that you will become a prime suspect. Don’t let your innocence be your shield. Hire a Grand Rapids sex crime lawyer. When a sex crime is committed, the police work hard to collect as much evidence as possible. They’ll speak at length with the victim, trying to get a thorough description of the perpetrator. The victim also receives comprehensive medical attention. In the case of rape or other sexual assault, this attention will include the use of a rape kit. Rape kits are used in forensic medical examinations to collect evidence. This may include gathering tiny bits of hair and fiber from the victim’s clothing. It also involves preserving samples of fluids, such as semen, that may be recoverable from the victim’s body. These samples are supposed to be carefully, precisely handled to ensure that there is no contamination of the evidence. DNA evidence may also be collected at the crime scene. This involves looking for hair, fibers, fluids and other substances. Each item found at the scene may be collected for evidence. Cigarette butts, bottles, utensils and common household items may all be collected and tested for DNA evidence. It’s possible that the forensic evidence will show that a great number of people may have been at the crime scene. On the other hand, the DNA evidence may belong to only a few individuals. If your DNA is found, then you must have the help of a criminal defense attorney. There are many ways in which your DNA might be found at a crime scene even if you weren’t involved in a crime. That’s particularly true if you are acquainted with the victim. Your DNA could be transferred to the victim in perfectly innocent ways such as consensual sex or even recent casual contact. Unfortunately, the prosecutors will put the worst possible construction on the presence of your DNA at a crime scene.
Chain of Custody
DNA testing is precise, and all evidence must follow a strict chain of custody. This is meant to ensure that the samples are not contaminated and can be relied upon as being accurate. Scientific protocols must be observed when the samples are collected and when they are tested. Further, the evidence must be carefully preserved for more testing at a later date. Sometimes the chain of custody is not as strictly observed as it should be. Mishandling by the police or the laboratory may make the DNA test results suspect. However, this won’t necessarily stop the prosecution from moving forward with charges. Even where the chain of custody is questionable or the evidence was mishandled it is possible to be charged and even convicted. If you have been asked to provide a DNA sample, you do not have to immediately consent. Ask to speak with a criminal defense attorney first.
Contact a Grand Rapids Sex Crime Lawyer
You may be able to preserve your freedom and your future through working with a Grand Rapids sex crime lawyer. Call Miel & Carr PLC at (616) 773-2945.