A prostitution or solicitation charge can turn your life upside down and have long-reaching consequences for your personal and professional life. Not only could you face fines and jail time, but a conviction could also a negatively impact on your ability to get a job, find housing or your relationship with friends and family. For those reasons and more, it’s imperative that you at least consider hiring a lawyer to defend you at trial. Below, we take a closer look at the three most common defenses we use to help clients who have been wrongfully charged with prostitution or solicitation.
Defending a Prostitution Charge in Minnesota
There are three primary options for defending a prostitution or solicitation charge in the state of Minnesota:
1. The Entrapment Defense: Entrapment occurs when a government official (such as a police officer) entices a person to commit a crime that they otherwise would not commit. Proving entrapment is often difficult in prostitution cases because offenders actively seek out prostitutes without knowing that they are undercover police officers. This makes it easy for the prosecution to argue that the offender’s act of prostitution was premeditated and not forced.
2. The Due Process Defense: This is a viable option when, during the course of a prostitution arrest, a government official displays outrageous conduct that would make continuation of the case unconstitutional. For example, if a police officer involved in a prostitution sting is caught engaging in sexual contact during said sting, the due process of law is violated. A judge will be left to determine whether the state acted in conduct that violated the due process rights of the accused.
3. The Lack of Probable Cause Defense: This may be used when a prostitution patron is arrested prior to an agreement to engage in prostitution. An officer must have probable cause to arrest someone for prostitution. This means an explicit offer to engage in sexual contact for hire must be reached and documented. If the prosecution cannot prove that such an agreement occurred, the defendant can use this defense. It will be left up to a judge to determine whether the state has a reasonable belief based on all facts and circumstances that the defendant has committed the act of prostitution. This also requires in-court testimony by the defendant.
Minneapolis Prostitution Attorneys
Prostitution is often an embarrassing charge that most offenders wish to keep under wraps. The prosecution knows this and will use it to their advantage when negotiating a plea. Thus, it is essential to have a knowledgeable prostitution lawyer to help you through the complex legal proceedings.
The best possible defense against a prostitution charge is to not engage in prostitution. If you or someone you know is addicted to prostitution, the best course of action is to seek help. The following is a list of several prostitution recovery programs:
If you need help defending yourself against a prostitution or solicitation charge, reach out to the experienced lawyers at Appelman Law Firm. We can help ensure your best interests are protected. For more information, contact our office today for a free strategy session at (952) 224-2277.