When you hear of indecent exposure, you might think of people who walk nude around the streets and have the police called on them for multiple reasons. But did you know that sometimes you might expose yourself by accident to another party? Perhaps you were naked because you were trying to go from the pool to the house. Maybe you stepped outside into your backyard for a moment but then you realized that you locked yourself out. In many different scenarios, you might be able to defend yourself against an indecent exposure charge.
If you have been charged with a crime of indecent exposure, you could find that there are many penalties, even for a first-time charge. You might face as little as a misdemeanor, which could land you a few weeks to months in prison and a low fine, usually somewhere around $500-$2,000. However, if you have been convicted for the second or third time, you might find yourself in the hands of a felony charge. You would be required to file as a sex offender, which could leave a tremendous impact on your life.
Defenses in an Indecent Exposure Case
Lack of Intent: Perhaps there was no intent at the time of the crime. For example, what if a homeless person is attempting to bathe in a public place but tried to hide themselves? You stumbled across them by accident. This might not be indecent exposure because they did not have intent to offend you.
Mental Disability: If somebody has previously been diagnosed with a severe mental illness, they might not be held accountable for their actions. They might not understand that it is not acceptable to be nude in public in certain situations.
Intoxication: This might not free you from penalties, but it could reduce your charge if you were so intoxicated that you couldn’t make good decisions.
Age: A child or youth is more likely to expose themselves in public and have no intent in doing so. For example, if a child pulls up their shirt because they are too hot, this would not be indecent exposure.
Indecent exposure charges can bring many penalties, which is why it is important for you to have an attorney on your side to make your case. Call us at the Law Office of Peter Blair for more information on how we can help you.