Des Moines Sex Crime Attorney
In the 1970’s, when the Polk County Attorney’s Office still had one designated prosecuting attorney handle all Sex Investigations, Plea Negotiations, and Trials, Attorney Peter Berger of the Berger Law Firm P.C. did that in 1978. Those cases included all Sex Crimes and Assaults. Under today’s law, those charges are Sexual Abuse (in all degrees), Child Endangerment, and Lewd and Lascivious Acts. Peter Berger left the prosecutors office in 1980 for criminal defense work and returned as a Special Prosecutor for two Murder Trials, one of which was Iowa’s first televised trial. Now, Attorney Berger specializes in all types of criminal charges, especially those involving alleged Sexual Abuse, all other Assaults including alleged Domestic Abuse, Rape, Child Endangerment, and Computer Crimes involving Pornography, and alleged Solicitation of a Minor.
These allegations, whether they are “overcharged”, or simply untrue, can have terrible long term affects on you, your family, your reputation, including potential imprisonment (which is mandatory on forcible felonies), and restrictions on where you can live because of the Sex Offender Registry. The Registry law (Iowa Code 692A) is under attack in the legislature as not being workable both for law enforcement and citizens convicted or having pled guilty to crimes covered by the statute. BUT, for now at least, it is the law and has many requirements that include registering immediately as a sex offender upon release from prison (or after being sentenced to probation); notifying the sheriff of residency within five days; at least yearly verification of address and taking of a photo for ten years; and severe restrictions on where the person can live. Obviously convictions for crimes such as Sexual Abuse (709.2-4), and Lascivious Acts with a Child "qualify", but there are other qualifiers also, such as "any indictable offense involving sexual conduct directed toward a minor" [692A.1(5)(c)]. Posting or trading of such depictions can arguably qualify.
Computer Internet downloading of child pornography, trading photos or videos in chat rooms, and/or posting photos on "MySpace" or "Limewire" may not only lead to Federal if not State charges, but also registry requirements. If indicted in Federal Court, for downloading child pornography (even without photographing, selling, and/or trading photos or videos), the minimum sentence if convicted is serving in prison 85% of 5 years, but the sentence frequently reflects a federal sentencing guideline range of 85% of 10-15 years. These are very serious matters, and downloading is not just a private act in one's own home. There are huge ramifications for the downloader as well as victims of the crimes who have been photographed and frequently abused. There are active Task Forces in federal and state government obtaining computer IP addresses, then search warrants of homes, to seize computers and all storage discs where the IP address has been identified via the internet as downloading and/or trading/trafficking in child pornography. One should assume that any chat, posting, or file sharing on the internet will be taking place with, or at least reviewed by law enforcement officers. Computer use is not "anonymous". Again, to be indicted in Federal Court, or charged in State Court, the prosecutors do NOT have to prove that the defendant took the subject photos, traded, sold or even bought the photos/videos, and the law also doesn't allow lewd animated depictions of child pornography such as drawings and cartoons in certain circumstances.
Attorney Berger has provided quality defense representation (and prosecutions) in numerous cases involving sex crimes. He works hard to avoid or minimize all of the repercussions that can come along with a conviction for such a crime, including significant prison sentences, large fines, and lifelong sex offender registration. For a free initial consultation with Peter W. Berger, an expereienced sex crime defense attorney, fill out this contact form or call the firm at 515-288-8888 or toll free in state at 888-282-8886. Spanish or other language interpreting services are available. Attorney Peter W. Berger knows how the prosecution investigates these cases and understands their strategy and methodology. With more than 30 years of experience in criminal law matters, Mr. Berger is available to defend people in Des Moines, throughout Iowa, and in other states. Civil lawsuits and settlements are also handled with attorney Berger as Plaintiff's civil attorney on church cases, teacher, coach, and other areas of abuse including by therapists.
When Mr. Berger investigates and provides your defense, or mitigation/reasons for what happened, the case will be designed to more than just defend you; it will be specifically constructed to defend against the techniques that the opposition will use in an attempt to get a guilty verdict. A very important aspect of defense work is sentencing should there be a jury verdict of guilty, and/or negotiated guilty plea. There are many ways to mitigate, or otherwise lessen penalties. These include but are not limited to private risk assessments, polygraphs in certain situations, letters of recommendation, continued therapy with favorable reports (or placement in therapy) and lack of significant criminal history and "good works" by the client. There are many sentencing approaches as a last alternative in the defense of these type of very serious allegations.
Peter Berger is available to defend you against all sex crime charges in both State Court and Federal Court, including:
Peter Berger is people-oriented and understands that, in each stage of the process, he is dealing with individuals. He relates to people on a personal basis. That goes for his interactions with his clients and getting to know their needs, as well as his conversation with a jury when arguing your case, and at every step in between.
Contact sex crime defense lawyer lawyer Peter Berger @ 515-288-8888 or 888-282-8886 for a free consultation.