April 3, 2012
Whittel & Melton, LLC 1-866-608-5LAW (5529) – Florida Sex Crimes Attorneys
A former Fort Lauderdale, Florida youth pastor pleaded not guilty to a dozen charges of child molestation March 7 in court.
The 48-year-old man, recognized for his role in the community mentoring young boys and keeping them away from drugs and violence, is accused of molesting three boys spanning a period of 18 years. The first alleged victim, 18, came forward in late January with accusations of abuse starting when he was 8. Two other men, 23 and 26, presented accusations of the same nature within the next two weeks.
The man, currently being held at the Paul Rein Detention Facility in Pompano Beach, arrived in court to formally answer the charges against him. The man held prior positions in the Fort Lauderdale community including youth pastor, dean of students at an area charter school and youth counselor at various local schools, churches and organizations.
He was scheduled to appear back in court March 29.
Child molestation is considered a crime in every state, and virtually anyone can be accused of committing this sex offense. Unfortunately, the stigmas attached to any type of sex crime involving a child can lead to the accused suffering a severely tarnished reputation. In contrast to other types of criminal offenses, society tends to respond harshly to the mere accusation of child molestation and often assume someone connected to this type of crime to be guilty until proven innocent. In many instances involving sex crimes charges, those accused are found guilty of the charges despite later being proven innocent by DNA evidence, recanted testimony or possibly both.
Early intervention of a Florida Sex Crimes Attorney is critical to reducing the damage to a person’s reputation, life and future. Most importantly, a criminal defense lawyer can protect the rights of the accused during police interrogations, prosecutor negotiations, arraignments, hearings, and trial, sentencing and parole or probation phases of a sex crimes case. Despite the offense charged, it should always be a top priority to have attorney representation in the legal system. A sex crimes attorney can apply appropriate defenses to use to the advantage of the accused.
The Florida Sex Crimes Lawyers at Whittel & Melton can guide you through the legal process and best advise you of your options. Don’t let police and the criminal justice system trample your legal rights. Contact us today to arrange a private and confidential free consultation regarding the accusations made against you.
If you have been arrested on charges of child molestation in the Fort Lauderdale area or elsewhere in the state of Florida, contact the Florida Sex Crimes Defense Attorneys at Whittel & Melton online or call our office statewide and toll-free at 1-866-608-5LAW (5529).