Laws that prohibit indecent exposure or intentional exposure of private parts in public vary among states but share many similarities. In order to secure a conviction for indecent exposure, the prosecutor has to produce sufficient evidence before a judge or jury beyond reasonable doubt.
When is indecent exposure considered a crime?
The element of indecent exposure involves the exposure of male or female genitals, buttocks or female’s breasts. In some states, exposure of buttocks is not enough to make it a crime. To satisfy the requirement of wilful intent, the person must have the intention to expose his or her private parts. Indecent exposure must take place in an outdoor area whether publicly or privately owned like roads, parks, restaurants and stores.
However, there are also places that are not open to the public like jails and hospitals or inside an automobile that is visible to others that will suffice to make indecent exposure a crime. To be guilty of indecent exposure, there must be another person within sight. Some states require that the person must be of the opposite sex.
Defences against indecent exposure
Consent – Some states allow a person to consent to the nudity of another person. However, the person can still be charged with indecent exposure if there is a third party who did not give his consent to the exposure.
Nude dancing – is an activity that is highly regulated in many states. Nude dancing may be allowed under certain rules and regulations that the club and performers must adhere to. To avoid prosecution for indecent exposure, the club must consent to the activity. The mere presence of patrons means they are permitting the exposure.
Lack of sexual motivation – there are states that require sexual motivation or lascivious intent for indecent exposure to become a crime. For example, a person who urinates in public usually does not have the intent to arouse a sexual desire.
If you are facing a charge of indecent exposure felony, call Donich Law as soon as possible. You will require an experienced criminal lawyer to reduce your felony charges to misdemeanour charges with lower fines. Lawyers who have handled similar cases can assist you with negotiations.