Local law enforcement offiicals have arrested a man they believe may have been responsible for a string of recent sexual assaults in the North Hollywood area. Irvine Perez, who is 30 years old, is accused of sexually assaulting at least seven women since June, in some cases groping them, in others possibly exposing himself to them. Police believe Perez is also responsible for the attempted kidnapping of a 17-year-old girl, allegedly chasing her back and forth across the street until she managed to evade him.
Perez is a registered sex offender who was convicted of a similar series of assaults in the San Fernando Valley in 2006 and 2007. He was released from police custody on bond and is due to appear in court on December 5th. Law enforcement officials are still searching for any additional victims.
One of the most frustrating aspects of criminal law is the wide variety of criminal acts that fall under the umbrella of “sex crimes.” While being groped or having someone expose themselves to you may be unsettling, many people would deem it unfair to lump in these crimes with such serious offenses as rape or child molestation. The majority of sex cries in the San Fernando Valley are felony criminal offenses that can easily put a person in jail, in addition to permanently tarnishing his or her reputation with sex offender registry and the stigma that is so often attached to being convicted of a sex crime. If you or someone you know has been accused of a sex crime, you need an aggressive and experienced sex crime defense attorney on your side right away.
Exposing “private” body parts in a public place is usually charged as either lewd conduct or indecent exposure. By law, if you are in a public space such as a restaurant or out on the street, the touching or displaying of the genitals or buttocks of both men and women, or the displaying of the breasts by a woman, may be offensive to someone and is punishable by up to one year in a County Jail, probation and sex offender registration, perhaps for life. If the defendant has prior convictions for lewd conduct or indecent exposure, then the consequences could be even steeper as prior convictions tend to enhance the sentencing for just about any criminal offense, including a sex crime.