Indecent exposure is a very serious crime. Since it’s considered a sex crime, it’s absolutely essential to have a skilled and experienced criminal defense lawyer on your case, as soon as possible. Getting convicted of indecent exposure can have grave implications on your life, even if you had minimal criminal penalties. There is a very serious stigma associated with anybody who is convicted or even charged with a sex crime, so it’s critical to take this type of charge very seriously when it comes to clearing your name. Indecent exposure is one of those nebulous types of charges that can easily get thrown around unnecessarily too. Anybody who has ever had a wardrobe malfunction or has been ‘pantsed,’ knows that body parts being unwillingly exposed is embarrassing enough.
The Elements of an Indecent Exposure Charge
- The defendant exposed his or her genitals in the presence of another person or persons who might be offended or upset by the exposure.
- The exposure of one’s genitals was willful or intentional.
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Willful and Intentional Exposure
In order to be convicted with indecent exposure, the prosecution has to prove that the exposure was willful and intentional. You can’t be convicted of indecent exposure, simply for an accident wardrobe malfunction, which is embarrassing enough. If your genitals or private parts were exposed accidentally or through no fault of your own, you can’t be convicted of indecent exposure. The exposure has to be willful and intentional. Likewise, if you’re in a place where you have a reasonable expectation of privacy, and there is an unintentional viewer, you need to let your lawyer know the circumstances of your particular case immediately. This is a very important element of an indecent exposure case.
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Indecent Exposure in a Public Place
In most cases, indecent exposure charges are associated with an exposure of one’s genitals in a public place. It’s also possible to get charged with indecent exposure in a private establishment if others are present. Whether you had a reasonable expectation of privacy or not, is something you can discuss with your lawyer. If you’ve been charged with indecent exposure in a public area or a private establishment or residential place, you need to speak with a lawyer as soon as possible about the details and unique circumstances of your individual case.
First Indecent Exposure Conviction
In Mississippi, your fist conviction of indecent exposure is typically considered a misdemeanor. You might be facing a fine of up to $500 and potentially up to six months in jail.
Second Indecent Exposure Conviction
On your second conviction of indecent exposure within five years, you’re still looking at misdemeanor charges. Only this time, your penalties are a little more severe. You could be looking at up to a year in jail and a $1,000 fine.
Third Indecent Exposure Conviction
After a third conviction in five years in the State of Mississippi, you’re looking at felony indecent exposure charges. This can be get you locked up for up to five years in a state penitentiary. You could also be facing up to $5,000 in fines.
Breast-Feeding is Not Indecent Exposure
In the State of Mississippi, breast-feeding is not considered indecent exposure, whether it offends a particular person’s sensibilities or not. You can’t be charged with or convicted of indecent exposure, for the simple act of feeding your baby.
Possible Reasons Leading to Indecent Exposure Charges
- Changing clothes outside
- Partially nude sunbathing
- Public urination
Every case is different, so depending upon the unique circumstances of your particular situation, you could be facing additional charges. Not all initial charges of indecent exposure are ‘sexual’ in nature, so it’s essential to speak with your lawyer about the facts and circumstances about your case. In many cases, the exposure is purely accidental. It’s actually pretty rare that people want to have their private parts and genitals exposed to the public or people in the vicinity.
After an Indecent Exposure Charge in Jackson
An indecent exposure conviction can have a lasting impact on your ability to live your life. This type of criminal record can leave you with the lifelong stigma of a sexual offender. Since many cases of indecent exposure are simply accidental or mistaken, it’s essential to get the ball rolling on your defense as soon as possible, if you’ve been charged. If you or a loved one has been charged with indecent exposure in or around the Jackson Metro Area, contact the skilled and proven criminal defense team at Coxwell & Associates, PLLC at (877) 231-1600 for an immediate case consultation.