Increasingly parents across the country are recognizing what many criminal defense attorneys in Michigan have been arguing for years – jailing teens for sex offenses is unfair and often significantly out of proportion to the crime. A recent teen sex crimes article chronicles one family’s journey after a Royal Oak teen was sent to prison for “failing in love with a teenage girl.”
The article reviewed the case of Ken Baldino, an 18-year-old senior in a Michigan high school who was arrested for having sex with his girlfriend who was a 14-year-old freshman. In Michigan, the age of consent is 16. Baldino was convicted for criminal sexual conduct and was sentenced to one year in jail and three years’ probation. However while on probation the teens got back together, which was a probation violation, and Baldino was sentenced to 5-15 years in jail.
A sex crimes defense attorney in Michigan can fight back if your teen has been charged with any sex offense.
Baldino’s mother Francie is now part of a parent led rebellion across the country arguing against sex-offender laws that rather than just protecting children in many cases ruin – or significantly adversely affect – their teens lives’ by imposing punishments way out of proportion to the crime.
Baldino spent six years in jail and now must wear a GPS tracking device. Francie Baldino is now part of an organization fighting prosecutions for “Romeo-Juliet” type sex offenses. Although in many situations the questions are complex, as stated by Baldino “the law should treat teenage lovers differently from pedophiles or violent sexual predators. The punishment is too extreme for kids. It’s a system that’s not working.”
Although some of the parameters have been changed so that teens may not need to place their names on the sex offender registry, where teen romances don’t fit within the parameters, the teens should face counseling or other alternative punishment, not imprisonment and placement of their names on the sex crimes registry.
As a Michigan sex crimes defense attorney I agree. Being labeled a sex offender has a stigma that may last for life and may affect your ability to find a job, live where you like and even attend the schools of your choice. Jail time for teenage sex is simply unjust.
If you or your teen has been charged with a sex crime it is important to fight back immediately to protect your future. For more information and for an immediate free consultation, contact the aggressive sex crimes defense attorneys in Michigan at Grabel & Associates to begin preparing your defense.