If you are successfully charged with indecent exposure it will have long-term consequences that will likely impact the rest of your life, such as mandatory registration as a sex offender.
Facing this sort of charge requires searching out quality legal services to ensure that you have the best chance of defending your reputation and even your liberty, in some circumstances.
Here is a look at some classic scenarios that could be considered as indecent exposure together with some situations that are unlikely to qualify as an offense in the eyes of the law.
A deliberate act
The most obvious example of a charge of indecent exposure would be when someone is accused of deliberately exposing their genitals to another person, often in a public space like a park.
However, you could also be charged with indecent exposure in many other settings if you set out to deliberately expose yourself to another person against their wishes.
The purpose of this act could be for your own gratification or could be that you wanted to offend the other person as your primary reason for committing the act.
Whichever way, this deliberate exposure is a classic scenario that can lead to a successful prosecution if the circumstances are that cut and dried.
A question of genitals
The law is pretty clear when it comes to the boundaries of indecent exposure and if you reveal bare genital parts to another person with a view of offending them or for your own sexual gratification this would usually be considered indecent exposure.
You were not sexually aroused
It is important to understand that you do need to be in a state of arousal or for the other person to even see you expose your genitals to them in order to be accused of indecent exposure.
It is the act of exposing yourself with a willful intention to offend or draw attention to yourself that matters most.
Even if the person chooses not to look at what you are doing, the act of exposing yourself is still the most salient point.
It can actually happen that you might accidentally expose yourself to someone else without intending to do so.
If you accidentally expose yourself in public and it is clear that the exposure was not intentional or willful this would not be viewed as indecent exposure.
Nobody saw you
There needs to be another person present for a charge of indecent exposure to be made against you.
If you exposed yourself in a public setting but nobody witnessed the act that would not be viewed as indecent exposure.
It is always best to discuss your options and the circumstances of your case with a legal professional as quickly as possible. You may find that your lawyer suggests a lesser plea of lewd conduct, which would not involve registration as a sex offender if that plea was accepted.
Understanding what constitutes indecent exposure and getting the right legal representation could make all the difference to the outcome and how the allegation impacts your future.