Maryland Solicitation Lawyer

Being accused of solicitation can be an embarrassing and stressful experience. A mere arrest can be enough to affect you adversely, both personally and professionally. If you wish to avoid some of the most negative repercussions of prostitution conviction, you may want to enlist the services of a Maryland solicitation lawyer.

In many cases, a solicitation arrest may result from an undercover police operation, an online ad, or a simple misunderstanding. Regardless of the circumstances, you may have defenses available to you that can assist in your case. A criminal defense lawyer may be able to utilize appropriate defenses to bring about a more favorable resolution to your situation.

Solicitation Charges in Maryland

Solicitation is a common criminal offense that prohibits individuals from intentionally offering, asking, or agreeing to pay another for sexual intercourse or any sexual acts. Md. Code, Crim. Law § 11-301 defines “solicit” as “urging, advising, inducing, encouraging, requesting, or commanding” others to do something.

  • 11-306 does not require that any sexual activity occur for individuals to commit the crime of solicitation. Individuals may violate this code section if they fail to reach an agreement with another person to obtain sexual services. As a solicitation lawyer in Maryland can advise, the mere offer of paying for sex is enough for a conviction.

This code section also prohibits soliciting or offering to solicit assignation. Prostitution refers to the performance of a sexual act for hire. However, assignation refers to making an appointment for prostitution or taking any step to carry out an arrangement for prostitution.

Evidence and Solicitation Charges

One of the critical elements of the criminal offense of solicitation is intent. Individuals must intend to commit solicitation of prostitution or assignation to be guilty of the crime. Therefore, the prosecution must have some evidence of intent, such as:

  • Withdrawing an agreed-upon sum of money before an assignation
  • Physically giving money to a person whom the individuals believe is a prostitute or to a third party to hire a prostitute
  • Driving to a prearranged location with money to pay for sex
  • Picking up someone whom individuals believe is a prostitute and driving to a hotel room or other site

All these situations easily could lead to solicitation charges. In some cases, however, the evidence may be inadequate to support the intent to commit solicitation or another element of the charge. A Maryland solicitation lawyer may be able to highlight the lack of evidence and work toward a reduction or dismissal of charges.

Sanctions for a Solicitation Conviction

Solicitation is a misdemeanor offense under state law, as is assignation and prostitution. The maximum punishment for a solicitation conviction is a jail sentence of one year and a $500 fine. Since there is no mandatory minimum sentence for this conviction, many individuals will serve probation rather than jail time, especially for a first offense.

Individuals may be able to overcome or reduce these charges in appropriate circumstances. Criminal records of a solicitation charge that are dismissed later may be eligible for an expungement motion, which can destroy all records. Some jurisdictions so also may offer diversion programs for first-time offenders, which may allow qualified individuals to avoid a criminal conviction.

Other repercussions from a solicitation conviction may occur outside the courtroom. A criminal conviction will show up on background checks that prospective employers and landlords often conduct. A Maryland solicitation lawyer may be able to take steps to help individuals avoid or reduce the possibility of these unwanted consequences.

Call a Maryland Solicitation Attorney for Advice

If you are facing accusations of solicitation of prostitution or assignation, the potential for damage to your personal life and your career is great. In addition to a jail sentence and a fine, you may lose your job, become ineligible for some occupations, and suffer damage to your reputation in the community. A Maryland solicitation lawyer can be vital in building a strong defense to the charges against you.

Keeping your criminal history clean can be crucial to your future success. By working with legal counsel, you can explore your alternatives for resolving your charges as quickly and efficiently as possible. Call today.