Washington DC Solicitation Attorney

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Proponents of legalized prostitution say that the act of trading sex for money is simply an act of commerce—free enterprise driven by supply and demand. However, in 49 of the 50 states and in Washington DC prostitution is made illegal in an effort to uphold community morals and public decency. In fact, not only is the act of prostitution illegal, but the mere solicitation of prostitution is illegal. If you’re facing serious charges, contact a DC defense lawyer who has experience handling these sorts of cases.

Prostitution is defined as an offer or invitation for a sexual act, or sexual contact, in return for a fee. To enforce this law … undercover police officers will (often) pose as prostitutes and approach people they suspect of soliciting prostitution.

They will make an offer for a sex act, request money, and wait for an agreement from the suspect. There doesn’t need to be any money changing hands, nor does their need to be any sexual contact between the two people. Also, the undercover police officer does not need to admit that they are an undercover police officer even if asked by the suspect.

The penalty for a first offense conviction for solicitation is, at maximum, 90 days of incarceration. The penalty for a second offense of solicitation is a maximum of 180 days incarceration. But there are no mandatory minimum incarceration periods.

Solicitation of prostitution in DC is a misdemeanor offense whose legal penalties get progressively more stringent upon second and subsequent convictions. For many people, the threat of jail or fines is much less devastating than the personal and professional havoc created by a criminal conviction for solicitation of prostitution in Washington DC. In order to maximize the potential of having your case dismissed and to minimize the impact a solicitation charge can have on your personal life, it is imperative to contact a DC solicitation lawyer to handle your case with discretion and professionalism.

DC Solicitation of Prostitution

DC prostitution laws classify solicitation as the attempt to persuade, entice, convince, or invite another to engage in sexual activity in exchange for payment. Just as prostitution charges can be levied against either the person providing payment or the person receiving payment in exchange for sexual favors, DC solicitation charges can be brought against either party.

Often, a solicitation arrest is the result of an undercover police operation, in which a decoy acts as prostitute, in essence soliciting customers for sex. When someone agrees to pay for sexual services, the police arrest the unsuspecting “customer.” Such sting operations must be carefully conducted to avoid entrapment. If you have been charged with solicitation of prostitution as a result of a police prostitution sting, contact an experienced DC solicitation lawyer at once, who can closely evaluate your arrest. An illegal arrest or an improperly conducted operation could lead to the dismissal of your case.

Solicitation Defense in DC

In addition to entrapment, an illegal arrest, or illegally obtained evidence, there are several other defense strategies a skilled DC solicitation attorney may use in representing your case.

A DC solicitation lawyer may be able to negotiate a diversion agreement on your behalf that could see a dismissal of your charges upon completion of a certain number of community service hours. Such an agreement could make you eligible for an expungement of your arrest record at a future date.

The best defense strategy depends on the unique circumstances of your case. Call DC solicitation attorney Peter Odom for a discreet, no-cost evaluation of your case.