Solicitation For Prostitution DEFENDERS of Your Rights. Your Life. Your Future.

Solicitation for Prostitution

In Florida, it is illegal to solicit a person for sexual acts. Solicitation is the encouraging, bribing, requesting or commanding a person to commit a crime. In the case of solicitation for prostitution, it is quite literally asking that one commit prostitution. This crime often is a misdemeanor, but the consequences can be harsh.

Being convicted of soliciting a prostitute can have a serious impact on your personal and professional life. In addition, you could face jail time, fines or both. If you are charged with soliciting a person for a sexual act, contacting an experienced attorney is critical.

St. Petersburg Solicitation for Prostitution Attorney

If you have been arrested for solicitation for prostitution, contact a skilled St. Petersburg solicitation defense attorney at Morris Law Firm, P.A.. Solicitation is a misdemeanor, but it can have a severe impact on your life. The criminal record and the societal stigma could impact you long after the court-issued penalties.

Melinda Morris of Morris Law Firm, P.A. is a former assistant state attorney who understands both sides of the law. She has more than 15 years of experience in the legal field and she knows what it takes to get a favorable outcome in a case. She can help you protect your future and your criminal record.

Morris Law Firm, P.A. represents clients throughout the Tampa Bay area including St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Pinellas County, Tampa, Hillsborough County and areas throughout other surrounding counties. Call (727) 592-5885 or visit our online form to schedule a free consultation.

Information About Solicitation of a Prostitute

What is Solicitation for Prostitution?

A person could be charged with solicitation if he or she encourages, bribes, requests or commands a person to engage in sexual acts, according to Florida Statutes Annotated § 796.07. The person who is being bribed does not have to be considered a prostitute for the charge to apply. The offense generally is considered a misdemeanor.

It is not necessary for money to exchange hands, only the offer of money needs to be made. As well, it is not necessary that a sexual act is committed, or that the person solicited actually be willing or able to commit the crime of prostitution.

For instance, if a person solicits an undercover police officer, he or she still could be charged with solicitation. Law enforcement agencies throughout the country often charge people in these scenarios.

Penalties for Solicitation of a Prostitute in Florida

Criminal Penalties

Solicitation of a prostitute is a second-degree misdemeanor for a first violation, which could mean up to 60 days in jail, a fine of up to $500 or both. A second offense is considered a first-degree misdemeanor, which could include up to one year in jail, a fine of up to $1,000 or both.

A third or subsequent violation would be considered felony of the third degree. This could include up to five years in prison, a fine of up to $5,000 or both. A person who is charged with a third or subsequent violation could be offered admission to a pretrial intervention program or a substance-abuse treatment program.

If the sex worker, or the person being solicited, is a minor the charges could be more severe. It would be increased by one degree. For example, if a person originally would be charged with a first-degree misdemeanor, but a minor was involved, it could be a third-degree felony.

Civil Penalties

A recent change to Florida’s Statute on Prostitution (Florida Statute § 796.07) imposes a civil penalty in addition to the above criminal penalties for Solicitation of Prostitution. Any person who would, “…solicit, induce, entice, or procure another to commit prostitution, lewdness, or assignation” is subject to a $5000.00 civil penalty under Florida Statute § 796.07(6) if the violation results in any disposition by the court other than an acquittal or dismissal of the charges. This means that even the normally beneficial result of a Withhold of Adjudication will not avoid the $5000.00 civil penalty.

To avoid the civil penalty an alleged offender would have to have the charges dismissed, or go to a jury trial and be found not guilty (acquittal). Most alleged Solicitation of Prostitution offenders are not aware of the significant potential financial penalty involved in the crime. It is critically important in these cases to deal successfully with the criminal charge so that the civil financial penalty may also be avoided.

Other consequences could include:

  • Publicity of the crime via local media including TV and newspaper
  • Booking photo and information being available online
  • Mandatory health test
  • Impounding of vehicle if used in the commission of the crime
  • Issues with employment

Potential Defenses

Building a strong defense, in any case, is important. In solicitation cases, an attorney at Morris Law Firm, P.A. can begin discussing the facts of your case with you early on to determine what defense might be available to you. Some possible defenses could include:

  • Entrapment – If you were enticed to commit a crime you otherwise would not have done
  • Investigative Mistakes by Law Enforcement
  • Mistaken Identity
  • Miranda Rights – If you were not properly read your Miranda Rights, incriminating statements you may have made to law enforcement may not be admissible in court.

We will strive to file any necessary motions to dismiss or motions to attempt to exclude evidence in an effort to maximize your opportunity for a positive outcome. As your criminal defense lawyer, we will represent you at any necessary pre-trial hearings, pre-trial motions and at trial. We will work to ensure your rights are represented.

Finding A Pinellas County Solicitation Defense Lawyer

If you have been arrested and charged with solicitation for prostitution, contact a St. Petersburg lawyer to discuss possible defenses and specific strategies that may exist in your case. Call Morris Law Firm, P.A. at (727) 592-5885 to schedule a free consultation. Your reputation is important, and Morris Law Firm, P.A. can help you protect it.

Why Choose Our Law Firm?

See the Difference Our Service Provides
  • FORMER STATE PROSECUTOR

    Melinda Morris is a former prosecutor and has handled thousands of criminal cases from investigation through sentencing enabling us to identify weaknesses in the State’s case against you.

  • STRATEGICALLY AGGRESSIVE

    We never settle for the easiest outcome or the typical result. We know how to negotiate with the State Attorney and we will work to get you the best possible outcome.

  • TRUSTED & EXPERIENCED

    Melinda Morris has practiced criminal law for over 20 years. Our clients trust advice that comes from experience in nearly every type of criminal case.

  • PERSONAL ATTENTION

    We will know every client’s story because we will take the time to listen and understand. You will work with your attorney one-on-one at every stage of the process.

  • PROMPT COMMUNICATION

    You will have the cell phone number of your attorney. Your attorney will directly return your call, email, or text to answer your pressing questions.

  • SAME DAY REPRESENTATION

    The government is wasting no time in trying to prove your guilt, a proactive defense is imperative. Prompt and decisive action from your defense attorney is of critical importance.

Meet the Attorneys

Melinda Morris & Seth Shapiro

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