A person is guilty of indecent exposure and a violation of penal code section 314 if he or she willfully exposes his or her genitals in the presence of another person who might be offended by this conduct. The prosecution must also prove that the accused exposed himself or herself for the purpose of drawing attention to the act and for the purpose of sexual gratification. This is most commonly found in cases of public masturbation or with people known as flashers. The penalties for an indecent exposure conviction are severe and will have a profound effect on your future.
There are defenses to these accusations and an accused should contact the attorneys at Law Office of John D. Barnett as soon as possible.
Possible Penalties for Indecent Exposure in Orange County
This crime is charged as a misdemeanor and a person convicted of this charge faces up to a year in the county jail and fees and fines. The most serious consequence of a conviction for indecent exposure is the mandatory requirement to register as a sex offender. Whether the case is charged as a misdemeanor or a felony, registration as a sex offender is mandatory.
An individual who enters into another person’s home without permission and commits this crime will be charged with a felony and faces a term in prison of up to three years and must register as a sex offender. If an accused has a prior conviction for indecent exposure, the new case will be charged as a felony.
How We May Defend an Indecent Exposure Charge
A charge of violating section 314 can be defeated. The "intent" requirement of indecent exposure is probably the most fertile ground for attack. It can be difficult to prove that someone actually intended for another person to see his or her actions. This defense attacks the second prong of the charge that a person is exposing himself or herself for the purpose of drawing attention to the act for sexual gratification.
Where the Alleged Act Takes Place Matters
The location of the alleged act can be very important for the defense of an indecent exposure case. It is important to articulate to the district attorney, or eventually a jury, that the location where the act was performed has an element of privacy and protection. Just because an individual can view the sexual act, does not mean that the person performing the act is violating the indecent exposure law.
An accused must act quickly. The attorneys at Law Office of John D. Barnett are skilled advocates who will battle for you. A guilty plea or conviction will have a traumatic effect on a person’s life and must be avoided at all costs. We have spent years fighting these types of cases and understand the ways to beat these charges.