There were 204,555 victims of sex-related crimes in 2022 in the US. Unfortunately, 36,592 were kids under 10 years old, while over 58,000 were between 11 and 15 years old. In cases involving sex-related crimes, guardians can take action through lawyers to get justice for the underage victims.

Moreover, you can contact an attorney if you don't know what to do after you're charged with sexual assault. A good lawyer will help reduce your prison sentence or prove your innocence if you are wrongfully accused.

In this article, we'll review various sex-related crimes and how they are classified. Read on.

Sex-Related Crimes that a Person Can Be Accused of

Sexual offenses are categorized into different stages depending on the level of malicious intentions or deeds towards victims. Various U.S. states have different laws regarding certain offenses, including varying statutes of limitations.

Here are some of the major sexual-related crimes in the US:

Child Sexual Abuse

Child sex abuse cases are rampant in the U.S., accounting for half of the total sexual crime annual statistics. These include various crimes, such as: 


Child molestation refers to physically contacting or using an underage person for sexual pleasure. This is a severe crime, attracting long prison sentences of up to 20 years if the accused is found guilty. 

Some states also classify exposing a child to pornography, indecent exposure in front of an underage, and forcing a minor to view sexual acts as child molestation. 


Child sex exploitation is the act of coercing a minor to perform indecent acts. For instance, a perpetrator can force or manipulate a child to send nude pictures online. Additionally, some might use them for commercial sex work. 


Perpetrators can psychologically and emotionally build a relationship with children to manipulate and sexually exploit them. This happens over time and is commonly within trusted parties like teachers, parents, and close relatives such as uncles, aunts, or cousins. 


The law regards any form of non-consensual physical penetration as rape. Rape charges depend on the degree of the crime. Here are the different stages of rape: 

  • 1st-degree rape: The offense involves the use of physical force and other severe acts like kidnapping and drugging. Some instances, like raping during a burglary, can attract life imprisonment. 

  • 2nd-degree rape: This can include force, but not to the extent of first-degree rape. Additionally, sexual acts with mentally disabled or unconscious individuals fall under this category. 

  • 3rd-degree rape: This mainly occurs when there's the use of threats to submit or the non-existence of clear consent. 

The third-degree stage attracts many wrongful accusations. If you’re wrongfully accused, get an excellent lawyer to help gather evidence and prove your case.  

Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

The workplace has its share of sexual harassment cases. Employees are normally harassed by fellow co-workers with the aim of blackmail, extortion, and bribery. 

Workplaces have human resource departments to handle such complaints and provide training to prevent sexual harassment. However, sexual harassment cases can also attract criminal charges, leading to imprisonment and hefty compensation.

Middle aged man spending time in jail


Commercial sex has restrictions, depending on the state. These regulations control sex violence cases and the spread of diseases.

Perpetrators of prostitution crimes include street sex workers and brothels not adhering to set laws. The worst cases can be linked to sex trafficking dens or money laundering schemes.

Indecent Exposure

Indecent exposure is an offense in most states, though different groups have tried to push for its decriminalization. These crimes include publicly flashing private parts in a way that offends others.


Certain sexual crimes, like child sex abuse and first-degree rape, attract severe penalties, extending up to life in jail. Nonetheless, others, such as harassment, are highly discouraged and can lead to defamatory charges. Therefore, it's crucial to get proper legal defense when wrongfully accused of a sex-related crime.