Jason Young is currently in the Cherokee County jail on charges of aggravated child molestation. According to reports, he has been denied bond as there are still ongoing investigations regarding other children that may be potential victims.
Young taught private music lessons from his personal residence in Woodstock, and the Crimes Against Children Unit of Cherokee County is requesting that anyone who had their children take lessons from him come forward with information.
As a Georgia Criminal Defense Lawyer, I would like to outline what constitutes aggravated child molestation in Georgia and the potential defenses that might apply to a wrongful accusation.
Aggravated Child Molestation in Georgia
The Georgia Code defines aggravated child molestation in Georgia as:
A person commits the offense of aggravated child molestation when such person commits an offense of child molestation which act physically injures the child or involves an act of sodomy. O.C.G.A. § 16-6-4(c).
The offense of child molestation in Georgia is best explained as when a person does any immoral or indecent act in the presence of or with any child under the age of 16. Therefore, the elevated offense of aggravated child molestation occurs if the child is injured in the process or the situation involves sodomy.
In order to be convicted of aggravated child molestation, the state of Georgia must prove the accused person is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. This can only be done by demonstrating that all the elements of child molestation and aggravated child molestation have been met.
If convicted of aggravated child molestation, the convicted person will be guilty of a felony in Georgia. The penalty can include either a life sentence in prison or a split prison sentence meaning 25 years in prison followed by probation for life.
A conviction for aggravated child molestation also means that the offender must register on the Georgia Sex Offender Registry.
I always point out that Sex Crimes in Georgia are so highly stigmatized that people tend to judge accused people as guilty from the moment the accusation or arrest occurs. This makes it very difficult for anyone to receive a fair chance.
Everyone has the presumption of innocence until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Here at Lawson & Berry, we understand this concept, and if you or a loved one has been accused of a crime in Georgia, we will listen to your side of the story. We will also investigate all the details of your case and determine which Georgia Criminal Defenses apply.
With a crime like aggravated child molestation, wrongful accusations unfortunately do happen too often. However, there are defenses that apply to aggravated child molestation. These defenses include:
- Lack of Evidence of an Injury
- Lesser Included Offenses in Georgia
- Mistaken Identity of the Offender
These are just some of the defenses that may apply. Again, if you or a loved one has been accused of aggravated child molestation in Georgia, contact us today.