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Sex Crimes

sex crimes

Sex crime accusations make for an extremely stressful time for the accused. The magnitude of the long-lasting effects these accusations have on an individual, both professionally and personally, are unmatched. For this reason, many individuals accused of such crimes want nothing more than to keep said accusations from surfacing in the press.

A sex crime conviction comes with serious legal consequences including prison time, probation, and possible registration as a sex offender. This does not include the collateral damages which may result in your personal life such as finding housing and employment opportunities.

Sex crimes encompass a wide array of crimes, including:

  • Rape
  • Forcible sexual abuse
  • Internet sex crimes
  • Lewdness and Indecent Exposure
  • Prostitution and solicitation
  • Rape and sexual assault
  • Sex crimes against children

Utah Sex Crime Defense Information Center

  • Common Sexual Offenses in Utah
  • Utah Sex Offender Classification
  • Utah Penalties for Sex Crimes
  • Collateral Consequences of Sex Crime Conviction
  • Sex-Based Crime Resources in Utah

Common Sexual Offenses in Utah

In the state of Utah, there is a wide variety of conduct constituting sex crimes. If an individual faces sex crime accusations or charges, it is vital to consult with an experienced defense attorney to discuss your legal options and specific facts of the case.

The aforementioned list of related offenses is non-exhaustive; however, the following offenses are commonly prosecuted in Utah:

  • Rape
  • Child Pornography
  • Polygamy
  • Sex Crimes Against Children
  • Prostitution and Solicitation
  • Failure to Register as a Sex Offender
  • Incest
  • Custodial Sexual Misconduct
  • Voyeurism
  • Habitual Sex Offender


: Utah code §76-5-402 an individual commits rape when this individual has sexual intercourse with another person without that person’s consent. This applies whether or not the individuals are married.

Rape is a first-degree felony punishable by minimum five years to life; minimum 15 years to life in the event that the accused has caused serious bodily injury to the victim; or life without parole if the defendant was previously convicted of a grievous sexual offense.

Child Pornography (Enticing a Minor)

: Utah code §76-4-401 an individual is enticing a minor when he or she knowingly uses the Internet or text messages to solicit a minor, or someone the actor believes to be a minor, to engage in any sexual activity in violation of a state criminal law.

Enticing a minor is punishable by a minimum of three years imprisonment and a maximum of life imprisonment.

Polygamy (Bigamy)

: Utah code §76-7-101 an individual is guilty of polygamy when he or she is married or knows that another person is married, and purports to marry or cohabit with the other person.

Polygamy is punishable by a maximum of five years imprisonment and up to $5,000 in fines.

Sex Crimes against Children (Aggravated Sexual Abuse of a Child):

Utah Code §76-5-404.1

Sexual Abuse of a child occurs when a person commits sexual abuse of a child when he or she touches a child in a sexual manner or causes a child to commit indecent acts to him or her with intent to cause substantial emotional or bodily pain, or intent to arouse.

Aggravated sexual abuse of a child occurs when in conjunction with the aforementioned acts, the actor used a dangerous weapon, caused severe harm, befriended the child with intent to commit the act, has a history of these acts, was in a trusted position, aided in trafficking, or caused penetration. This offense is punishable by a minimum of 15 years imprisonment to a maximum of life imprisonment without parole.

Prostitution and Solicitation:

Utah code §76-10-1302

Prostitution, as defined by Utah code, occurs when an individual engages in any sexual act with another for a fee of the functional equivalent; is an inmate of a prostitution house; or loiters in a public place for the purpose of being hired to commit sexual acts.

Prostitution is punishable by up to six months and jail and $1,000 in fines.

Utah Sex Offender Classification

Utah’s sex offender registration requirements are as follows:

Off-Limit Zones for Those convicted of Crime against Minor

Requirements for Registering

10 year Registration Requirement for the Following Offenses

Life Registration Requirement for the Following Offenses

Licensed daycares or preschools Out-of-state offenders must register within 10 days of entering the state, regardless of length of state Kidnapping, voyeurism, unlawful sexual activity with a minor, unlawful sexual conduct with a 16 or 17-year-old, Two separate convictions of any of the above, child kidnapping, aggravated kidnapping, enticing a minor over the internet, rape, rape of a child
Public swimming pools Offenders under AP&P supervision shall register with AP&P Forcible sexual abuse, incest, Lewdness (4 convictions required to for registration) Object rape, object rape of a child, forcible sodomy, sodomy on a child
Public or private primary and secondary schools Offenders no longer under AP&P supervision shall register with local law enforcement Sexual battery (4 convictions required for registration), lewdness involving a child, aggravated human trafficking Sexual abuse of a child or aggravated sexual abuse of a child
Community park open to the public Registration requirements last for the duration of the sentence and the following 10 years after termination of sentence (for life in some cases) Custodial sexual relations (with victim younger than 18 years old), sexual exploitation of a vulnerable adult Aggravated sexual assault, sexual exploitation of a minor, and aggravated exploitation of prostitution
Public playgrounds Offenders must register within 3 business days of every change of primary residence, secondary residence, place of employment, vehicle info, or educational info Sexual abuse of a minor, and attempting, soliciting, or conspiring to commit any felony offenses listed above (or in the “life list below)

Penalties for Sex Crime Convictions in Utah


Class C misdemeanor sex crimes are punishable by up to 90 days in jail and up to $750 in fines. Class B misdemeanor sex crimes are punishable by up to six months in jail and up to $1,000 in fines. Class A misdemeanor sex crimes are punishable by up to one year in jail and up to $2,500 in fines.

The following sex crimes are considered misdemeanors: lewdness and indecent exposure, and prostitution and solicitation.


Third-degree felony sex crimes are punishable by up to five years imprisonment and up to $5,500 in fines.

The following sex crimes are considered third-degree felonies: lewdness and indecent exposure.

Second-degree felony sex crimes are punishable by up to 15 years imprisonment and up to $10,000 in fines.

The following sex crimes are considered second-degree felonies: sexual exploitation of a minor and forcible sexual abuse.

First-degree felony sex crimes are punishable by up to five years imprisonment and up to $10,000.

The following sex crimes are considered first-degree felonies: rape, aggravated sexual assault, and enticing a minor,

Collateral Consequences of Sex Crime Conviction

Sex crime convictions carry heavy consequences in a person’s life. In addition to lengthy prison sentences and heavy fines, a conviction can make the process of finding employment extremely difficult. Sex offenders may also lose licenses and be banned from certain housing.

Sex offenders are prohibiting from jobs such as teaching, daycare work, and any other profession which would put an offender in close proximity to children are prohibited. All employment must be approved by a court-appointed agent.

Also, convicted sex offenders may be prohibited from obtaining certain professional licenses, or may lose current ones. Teaching licenses and other child care licenses cannot be held by sex offenders.

Finding housing is also increasingly difficult after being convicted of a sex crime.

Free Consultation with Sex Crimes Lawyer

If you’ve been charged with a sex crime or are being investigated in Utah, call Ascent Law for your free consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

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About the Author

People who want a lot of Bull go to a Butcher. People who want results navigating a complex legal field go to a Lawyer that they can trust. That’s where I come in. I am Michael Anderson, an Attorney in the Salt Lake area focusing on the needs of the Average Joe wanting a better life for him and his family. I’m the Lawyer you can trust. I grew up in Utah and love it here. I am a Father to three, a Husband to one, and an Entrepreneur. I understand the feelings of joy each of those roles bring, and I understand the feeling of disappointment, fear, and regret when things go wrong. I attended the University of Utah where I received a B.A. degree in 2010 and a J.D. in 2014. I have focused my practice in Wills, Trusts, Real Estate, and Business Law. I love the thrill of helping clients secure their future, leaving a real legacy to their children. Unfortunately when problems arise with families. I also practice Family Law, with a focus on keeping relationships between the soon to be Ex’s civil for the benefit of their children and allowing both to walk away quickly with their heads held high. Before you worry too much about losing everything that you have worked for, before you permit yourself to be bullied by your soon to be ex, before you shed one more tear in silence, call me. I’m the Lawyer you can trust.