Soliciting to practice prostitution is a felony offense in Wisconsin. Contact our expert defense attorneys at (414) 270-0202 for help.

Soliciting to practice prostitution is a felony in Wisconsin.  While it’s on the mitigated end of the felony spectrum, this offense is a Class H felony.  That means it carries a possible penalty of 6 years in prison and $10,000.00 in fines.  That 6 year prison term breaks down into 3 years initial confinement and 3 years extended supervision.  Obviously these penalties are incredibly serious.  We suggest hiring a top criminal defense attorney to fight a charge like this.

At Van Severen Law Office we’re consistently recognized among the best criminal defense attorneys in Wisconsin.  Whether you’re facing an allegation related to sex crime, or any other criminal offense, we can help you.  Importantly, we dedicate 100% of our practice to defending individuals accused of committing crimes.

That persistent dedication to criminal defense allows us to better defend all of our clients.  We don’t need to stay up to date on family law developments, because we don’t practice family law.  While we can refer you to a proper attorney, our focus is on criminal defense.  That focus achieves better results for defendants in the criminal justice system.

For help, contact one of our sex crime defense attorneys at (414) 270-0202.  We answer phones 24/7, so call today.  Let’s start fighting your case.

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What is soliciting a prostitute?

Section 944.32 of the Wisconsin Statutes defines soliciting prostitutes.  The law provides:

Except [in cases involving soliciting a child for prostitution], whoever intentionally solicits or causes any person to practice prostitution or establishes any person in a place of prostitution is guilty of a Class H felony.

The definition of solicit is one adapted from the Model Penal Code.  To solicit  means to command, encourage, or request of another person to engage in specific conduct that constitutes the practice of prostitution.  To practice prostitution means intentionally engaging in sexual intercourse or other sexual acts for anything of value on an ongoing basis.

An example of this crime is simple: The defendant asks the prostitute to have sexual intercourse with him.  This involves both the solicitation requirement and the practice of prostitution requirement.

Wait, isn’t this a freedom of speech issue?  After all, this is simply using words, right?  Unfortunately, the Supreme Court of Wisconsin disagrees.  In Shillcutt v. State, 247 N.W.2d 694, the Supreme Court of Wisconsin determined that your 1st amendment freedom of speech rights don’t allow you to solicit a prostitute.

What are the elements of this offense?

All crimes in Wisconsin have elements. An element is a part of the offense.  And finally, the government must prove all of the elements beyond a reasonable doubt.  Wisconsin Criminal Jury Instruction 1566 provides the elements of soliciting to practice prostitution:

  • Firstly, the defendant solicited or caused a person to practice prostitution; and
  • Secondly, the defendant acted intentionally.

The intent element requires that the defendant engaged in solicitation intending that the crime of prostitution be committed.

Let’s consider another scenario in which you could face charges.  While a pimp/prostitute relationship would likely lead to human trafficking charges, it’s conceivable the government could proceed under this subsection.  For example: The defendant tells the prostitute to have sex with another individual.  In this example, the defendant caused the prostitute to practice prostitution.  And finally, he did so intentionally.

An abandoned parking lot for prostitution
Soliciting to practice prostitution is a serious criminal offense in Wisconsin. To speak with a top criminal defense attorney, contact us immediately at (414) 270-0202.

How do we defend my soliciting prostitutes case?

Firstly, it’s important to point out that every criminal case is different.  In a soliciting case, it makes sense to look at the language you actually used.  How clear was your request that an act of prostitution occur?  Frequently individuals in situations involving prostitutes don’t simply say “let’s have sexual intercourse for money.”  It doesn’t work like that.  But was your statement enough to lead to proper charges?  We’ll figure that out.

Secondly, is entrapment an issue?  Undercover police officers working on stings are frequently incredibly pushy when approaching individuals.  If they’re too pushy, arguably we’ll have a solid argument for a defense based on entrapment.

But again, all cases are different.  At your initial consultation we’ll begin planning your defense.  Once we receive discovery materials we’ll further refine that defense.  And eventually, we’ll present that defense in court.

Contact Van Severen Law Office for top criminal defense representation

At Van Severen Law Office we pride ourselves for being consistently recognized among the best criminal defense attorneys in Wisconsin.  It’s a reputation we’ve worked hard for.  And it’s a reputation we received by achieving miraculous results for clients.  We fight for our clients every step of the way, and frequently that turns into great results.

Charges like this are embarrassing for you, but you’ll probably find the stress begin to reduce one you’ve hired a criminal defense attorney.  You need an ally through this tough time.  And in our opinion, that ally should be a criminal defense attorney.  To get the fight started, contact us immediately at (414) 270-0202.  We can help.


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