Being accused of a sexually inappropriate or abusive act can be devastating. However, when the person making the accusation is a friend, acquaintance or family member, it can make an already complicated and embarrassing situation even worse. Relationships can be destroyed when a person is accused of a sex crime, regardless of if those allegations turn out to be true or not. In either case, a person’s life can be destroyed.

Should a person be convicted of sexual abuse charges, he or she can spend years in prison and lose any relationship with family members or friends. If the charges are ultimately dismissed or a person is found guilty, there can still be irreparable damage caused by the accuser and lives can be permanently changed. No matter what the result of a case is, there may be no winners.

One man is learning this difficult lesson after a jury made a ruling in his case. He was accused of engaging in inappropriate behaviors with the teenage daughter of his girlfriend. The teen stated that the man touched her and made inappropriate gestures around her when her mother was not home one evening. She also claimed that he said he would kill her if she ever reported the actions.

However, the man maintained his innocence and at his trial, the jury sided with him and found him not guilty. While the 50-year-old man is undoubtedly relieved with the ruling, the fact is that his reputation and relationships may have already suffered as a result of the accusations. But with the not guilty verdict locked in, hopefully he can begin to repair any damage that has been done.

In many cases like this one, it comes down to one person’s word against another. That is why it can be crucial for the person facing charges to have a criminal defense attorney who can present a strong defense and scrutinize any testimonies that may not be credible. With an effective defense, people facing serious sexual misconduct charges can work to avoid a conviction and serious penalties.

Source: KSAT, “Man found not guilty in sex crime trial,” Paul Venema, July 25, 2014