Indecent exposure occurs whenever someone deliberately exposes their anus or any part of their genitals for sexual gratification or with reckless disregard as to who may be watching. Some seemingly harmless acts could fall into this category, a few of which include:
- Public urination
- Partially-nude sunbathing or “skinny dipping”
Other Naked in Public Acts
Sexual misconduct can also include more serious acts in Houston, Texas such as public lewdness or the malicious flashing of body parts in order to intimidate another. Regardless of whether the acts were done as a joke or were intended to shock or frighten someone, they are considered a misdemeanor crime that carries significant punishments according to the Texas Penal Code.
Punishments for Presenting Body Parts
The punishment for showing too much skin in public can include jail time, fines, or probation. In some cases, those who are found guilty of being naked in public could also be asked to register as a sex offender. The odds of mandatory sex offender registry increase if an actor willingly and knowingly exposed body parts to children in an effort to gratify himself sexually.
It Can Be Defended
In order to be charged with this crime in Houston, a prosecutor must show that the defendant willingly and intentionally committed an act. As such, some defenses might be:
- “Wardrobe malfunction”
- Lack of intent
- Mental illness
- Acting under duress or threat
- Involuntary intoxication
Indecent Exposure Age
While age is not a defense in this crime, it can nonetheless be used to mitigate the punishment. As such, teens who are found guilty of improper exposure will likely receive a lesser sentence than an adult will, regardless of the circumstances involved.
Even though public exposure may seem like a relatively minor crime, it carries a stigma that can follow the accused for years to come. Those who are charged would do well to contact a criminal defense lawyer about the matter.