A proposed bill in Ohio could bring big changes for sentencing of low level felony sex offenses. House Bill 405, which was recently passed by the House and is currently awaiting Senate approval, aims to amend section 2907.07 of the Revised Code in regards to sentencing for the offense of “importuning,” or the solicitation of sexual conduct from a child under 13 years of age.
As it stands, the wording in this section of the law currently dictates a “presumption of prison” for individuals convicted of fourth and fifth-degree felony importuning. If House Bill 405 passes, however, this wording will change to require a mandatory prison sentence for both fourth and fifth-degree felony importuning offenders upon conviction. This includes importuning through the use of telecommunication devices such as a computer or a cell phone. The bill also seeks to implement mandatory prison sentences for offenders who are more than 10 years older than a victim who is 13 to 16-years-old.
A majority of low-level sex offenders do not serve prison time under the current wording of the Revised Code. While individuals convicted of importuning could sometimes receive a lessened sentence in the past, this change would impose a mandatory sentence of one to five years in prison and fines up to $10,000 – even for a first offense.
The bill passed in the House with unanimous support and is expected to pass in the Senate as well. Our firm will continue to monitor this situation and provide updates.
Sex Crime Attorney in Columbus, Ohio
If you are currently facing charges for importuning or any other type of sex crime, it is urgent you retain the services of a powerful Columbus criminal defense lawyer from The Meranda Law Firm as soon as possible to protect your freedom and reputation. Backed by more than 15 years of dedicated legal experience and a Super Lawyers® Rising Stars℠ inclusion, we have the knowledge and skills you need to maximize your chances of securing a favorable outcome for your situation.
Call (614) 707-4239 or schedule a no-cost consultation today to evaluate your legal options.