Due to the severity of federal child enticement charges in Washington, DC, building a strong defense is imperative to ensure that you minimize the harm of your charges as much as possible. However, when building a defense one important factor to consider is how your case will be prosecuted and what kinds of facts and evidence they may use.
Below, a DC federal child enticement lawyer discusses the prosecution of federal child enticement cases and what elements are typically the most hotly contested in court. To learn more about what constitutes child enticement or to discuss your case, call and schedule a consultation with an attorney today.
The government needs to prove that you either attempted to or actually persuaded, induced, coerced, or enticed a minor into having prohibited sexual activity. Now, the attempt often comes in where there is a fictitious minor and that’s often the scenario that is dealt with in these cases. The standard is beyond a reasonable doubt. That’s how the case has to be proved, which is the highest standard in our justice system.
The electronic content is normally what actually shows the attempt or the actual persuasion, inducing, coercion, or enticement of a minor. That is usually the most hotly contested fact or hotly contested elements in these cases. Sometimes, the issue is who actually did the communication or who was using the computer. However, that’s not as common in those cases. The most common and hotly contested is did the act actually constitute a crime or the crime of enticement or not.
What the government normally does is they put on the undercover officer who describes the communication that he or she had with the person who is accused and that is typically what they do. It’s actually a relatively quick government presentation.
They will try and make that presentation of their evidence, the electronic evidence and it’s not a lengthy presentation. But what they’re trying to show is, and this is what the government tries to do, they play up what can be disturbing conversations even if they don’t add up to what would legally be defined as violating the statute. The conversations can be disturbing and what they do is they try and use those to influence the jury against your client.
One important thing people need to know is that some federal prosecutors are better than others and in that regard some understand the law and some don’t. However in the case of child enticement, federal prosecutors are going to come at you as hard as they possibly can and try and bring as many resources as possible up against you.
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