Georgia Criminal Defense Blog

Closer Look at Criminal Attempt After Two Men Arrested for Attempting Child Molestation

Posted by Richard Lawson | Aug 02, 2018 | 0 Comments

Investigations are ongoing after two men have been arrested in Barrow County after allegedly arranging to meet a 14-year-old to exchange money for sex. 

Both Khayyan Dickson and Wayned Woodall have been on authorities' radars for the past four months. Both men were arrested on charges of criminal attempt to commit child molestation in Georgia. 

Most people are unaware that there is a crime for attempting to commit a crime. In today's post I will outline the law behind this offense.

Criminal Attempt in Georgia

The Georgia Code defines criminal attempt in Georgia as:

A person commits the offense of criminal attempt when, with intent to commit a specific crime, he performs any act, which constitutes a substantial step towards commission of that crime. O.C.G.A. §16-4-1.

According to Georgia Courts, there are two elements to the crime of attempt.

  1. A specific intent or purpose to bring a criminal result
  2. A significant overt act in furtherance of that intent that proves that the Defendant went past the point of preparation and began preparing for the crime. 

In order to be convicted of criminal attempt, the State of Georgia must prove that the accused person is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. This involves a showing that the defendant had the specific intent to commit the crime as well as took a substantial step to committing the crime.

The penalty if convicted for criminal attempt varies based on the crime that was being attempted.

If the attempted crime was one punishable by death or life in prison, the penalty will a prison sentence between one and thirty years.

If the attempted crime was a felony other than one punishable by death or life imprisonment, the penalty is a minimum one year in prison but no more than one-half of the maximum period of time for which he or she would have been sentenced if they had been convicted of the crime attempted. They could also be sentenced to one-half of the maximum fine if they had been found guilty of crime attempted, or both.

If the attempted crime was a misdemeanor, the penalty will be punished as a misdemeanor.

Practice Note

As a Georgia Criminal Defense Attorney, it is important for me to note that a conviction for attempt to commit a crime in Georgia carries the exact same stigma as if the intended crime had been committed. This means that the same consequences apply after conviction. 

However, an accusation does not mean guilt. Not everyone accused of attempting or committing a crime is guilty of doing so. There are Georgia Criminal Defenses that can apply to a wrongful accusation. 

If you or a loved one has been arrested in Georgia, contact us today.

About the Author

Richard Lawson

Managing Partner at Lawson & Berry:


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