Under California Health and Safety Code 120291, the willful exposure of HIV or AIDS to another person is a crime. However, that does not mean you will automatically be convicted of a sex crime if you failed to disclose your HIV or AIDS to your sexual partner. An experienced attorney may be able to help you prove that you did not have the intent to expose your partner to an infectious disease.
Consequences of a Willful Exposure Conviction
The willful exposure to HIV or AIDS in California is a felony under Health and Safety Code 120291. If you are convicted of this crime, you face three, five or eight years in prison.
Your sentence will depend upon the facts of the case and your criminal history.
How You Could Be Convicted of Willful Exposure to HIV or AIDS
In order to be convicted of this crime, the prosecution must prove all of the following:
You exposed another person to HIV or AIDS by engaging in unprotected vaginal or anal sex
You knew at the time of the unprotected sex that you were infected with HIV or AIDS
You did not disclose your disease to your partner, AND
You acted with the specific intent to infect the other person with HIV or AIDS
The “specific intent” element of this crime is extremely important. In fact, the law states that even if the prosecution provides evidence that you had knowledge of your status as HIV-positive or infected with AIDS, this is insufficient to convict of you of this crime without additional evidence that you had the intent to infect the other person.
The Role of Intent in Willful Exposure to HIV or AIDS
Specific intent is very hard for the prosecution to prove. If the prosecution cannot prove that you had the intent to infect your sexual partner with the disease, you cannot be convicted of this crime.
Prosecutors will have a difficult time trying to prove that you had the intent to infect the other person partly because the word “intent” has not been defined by this statute or by published court opinions as it applies to this law. For this reason, the fact that you lacked the intent to infect your partner would likely be your best defense to these charges.
Call the Sex Crimes Attorneys at Wallin & Klarich Today
Intent is difficult to prove in cases involving willful exposure to HIV or AIDS. You need an experienced attorney on your side to help you show that you lacked the intent to expose your partner to an infectious disease. At Wallin & Klarich, our sex crimes attorneys have been successfully defending our clients facing sex crime charges for over 30 years. Let us help you now.
With offices located in Los Angeles, Sherman Oaks, Torrance, Orange County, San Diego, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura, West Covina and Victorville, there is an experienced Wallin & Klarich criminal defense attorney available to help you no matter where you work or live.
Call us today at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245 for a free phone consultation. We will be there when you call.