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Suspect arrested in sexual assault of elderly woman

Allegations of sexual assault are serious and can cause lasting damage to the reputation, personal and professional life of the accused, even in the event that the charges are dropped. Sex crimes are often prosecuted intensely, and anyone facing such accusations should make sure to fully understand the charges and their possible effects.

There's a developing story out of western Florida involving an elderly woman who was allegedly sexually assaulted in a church earlier this month. The 26-year-old male suspect was arrested and charged with lewd and lascivious battery on an elderly person, kidnapping, sexual battery and lewd and lascivious molestation of an elderly person.

The incident allegedly took place in the sanctuary of Living Word Fellowship as the 70-year-old woman was giving the Tampa man a tour. Police sought the man after DNA evidence taken from the woman indicated him as a suspect.

According to police, this is not the man's first run in with the law, as he was arrested in November 2002 on charges of a lewd and lascivious act on a child. The charges were a result of a sex crime investigation involving a 7-year-old female.

The man is currently being held in jail without bail.

Repeat offenders facing sexual misconduct charges may face a greater challenge in their case, especially if the charges involve a minor, such as possession of child pornography or child sexual abuse, and it's vital to understand all of the available options for defense, including seeking treatment, if necessary.

Source: Tampa Bay Times, "DNA links Tampa man to sex attack inside church, police say," Robbyn Mitchell, Oct. 24, 2012.

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