If you’ve been charged with indecent exposure, you have been accused of a sex crime. Indecent exposure is defined by Texas law as exposure of your anus or any part of your genitals with the intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person, in a manner that is reckless about whether another person is present who could be offended or alarmed by the act.
Indecent exposure is a misdemeanor in Texas. Although it is not as serious as a felony, no one wants to go through life with a criminal record for any type of sex crime. An aggressive criminal defense lawyer can often put together an effective defense that will save you from the stigma of having a record for a sexual offense, which will come up every time you apply for a job or housing where a background check is required.
As a Class B misdemeanor, indecent exposure in Texas is punishable by up to 180 days in jail and/or a fine of no more than $2,000. If it is your first conviction, you will not have to register as a sex offender. But if it is a second or subsequent offense, registration will be required.
Your intent in exposing a prohibited body part is an important aspect of the definition of the crime. The prosecutor will need to show beyond a reasonable doubt that: a.) you performed the act, b.) you had the intent to sexually arouse or gratify, or c.) you did it with reckless disregard for another’s sensibilities.
Having a lawyer who can build a case to show that you lacked the intent to sexually arouse or upset anyone is often the best way to defend against indecent exposure charges. Your intentions could have been as a prank or practical joke. You may have been skinny-dipping in a remote swim hole when some hikers happened by, or sunbathing topless on a rooftop to even out your tan lines. People have been arrested and charged with indecent exposure for all these activities. In addition to lack of intent, mental incapacity may also be an appropriate and effective defense in some cases. A person with a mental illness or defect may not be legally responsible for the behavior. Intoxication may also be a mitigating factor.
Any time you have been charged with a sexual offense, with the right lawyer, you may be able to avoid a conviction that could haunt you for the rest of your life.
If you or someone close to you has been charges with indecent exposure in the Houston, Texas area, call the law offices of Mary E. Conn Law. Mary E. Conn has been representing the accused for more than thirty years, has received the highest possible ratings from Martindale-Hubble and AVVO and can be counted on to provide the quality legal reputation that can spare you jail time, humiliation, and possible limitations on employment and/or housing in the future. The initial consultation is free.