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Possible Penalties For Infecting Somebody With An STD

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In many states, (knowingly) infecting someone with a sexually transmitted disease (STD) is a criminal offense attractive various charges. If you are facing such an accusation, then it is good to know the possible sentences should you be convicted. Depending on your state, you may be:

Registered as a Sex Offender

In some states, you will be registered as a sex offender if you are convicted of affecting another person with an STD. You have to remain in the register for the specified period, which depends on your state. The consequences of being in this register can be disastrous for your life, for example, it can:

  • Prevent you from living in certain communities
  • Deny you some job opportunities
  • Bar you from entering certain countries
  • Cause you a life-long stigma

Sentenced to Prison Time

For jurisdictions that treat STD transmission as a sex offense, you are also looking at possible jail or prison time. The maximum number of years you can be given varies widely by state. Your sentencing will also depend on the circumstances of your offense such as the age of the plaintiff or the type of STD.  

For example, if you are convicted in Maryland, then you are looking at a maximum jail time of three years. Missouri, however, can give this class of sex offenders up to 15 years in prison. You could also be slapped with an extended prison time if there were other aggravating factors in your unlawful STD transmission. An example of an aggravating factor is having sex with a minor.

Directed to Pay Fines and Restitutions

The court may also direct you to part with some money as a fine or form of restitution to the victim. The fine is meant as a punishment, to show you the error of your ways and ensure that you do not repeat the offense. As for the restitution money, it is given to the victim to compensate him or her for his or her losses. For example, he or she may be compensated for lost wages, medical bills, as well as pain and suffering.

It is clear that infecting a person with a sexually transmitted disease has serious repercussions[,] so you should be careful with your sexual relations. Of course, there is always a chance that you may be accused of something you did not do. With the assistance of a criminal defense attorney, you can fight back and mitigate the sentences or even beat the charges. Contact a firm such as Guth Law Offices LLC for more information.