Law Offices of Erik Steven Johnson

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San Jose Indecent Exposure Defense Lawyer

san francisco bay area indecent exposure lawyer

Sex Crimes Attorney Defending Clients Charged with Indecent Exposure in San Francisco, San Mateo, and Santa Clara County

While not as serious as many other sex crimes, a conviction of indecent exposure can result in significant consequences. Such a charge can lead to termination of employment, a tarnished reputation, jail time, and sex registration. Even if the offender exposed him or herself to be amusing, the offender will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law in California.

If you are facing a criminal charge for indecent exposure, do not wait to see how you will be penalized. Contact the experienced, reputable criminal defense attorney at the Law Offices of Erik Steven Johnson. Attorney Erik Johnson will aggressively represent you, so your rights and freedoms are protected throughout the legal process.

California Penal Code Section 314: Indecent Exposure

Indecent exposure in California is legally defined as the exposure of a person's private parts or genitals in any public place or in a place where other people are present. In addition, when an individual assists or obtains another person to expose him or herself, that individual may be charged with indecent exposure as noted in California's Penal Code section 314:

"Every person who willfully and lewdly, either:

1. Exposes his person, or the private parts thereof, in any public place, or in any place where there are present other persons to be offended or annoyed thereby; or,

2. Procures, counsels, or assists any person so to expose himself or take part in any model artist exhibition, or to make any other exhibition of himself to public view, or the view of any number of persons, such as is offensive to decency, or is adapted to excite to vicious or lewd thoughts or acts,

is guilty of a misdemeanor."

This law also prohibits individuals from exposing themselves in the public view of others. Therefore, if an individual exposes himself in front of a window at home and he is in the view of passerby, he will have been in violation of section 314. In some parts of California, this public decency law also prohibits women from sunbathing topless on beaches. While the state generally permits women to go shirtless in public, it is local ordinances that dictate whether a woman can bare her breasts in public or in the public view of others.

Penalties for Indecent Exposure Charge

As compared to other sex crimes, indecent exposure is not punished as severely. However, while you may serve your time or accept the penalties imposed on you by the law, you will face lasting consequences for a conviction of indecent exposure, such as the following:

  • A tarnished reputation
  • Poor job prospects or termination of current employment
  • Damaged community and neighbor relations
  • Lifetime registration as a sex offender

In California, indecent exposure is a misdemeanor crime. However, if the individual is convicted of indecent exposure (violation of section 314 subdivision (1) as listed above) two or more times, then the offender will be charged with a felony crime. A person will also be charged with a felony crime if, after having been convicted of a crime under Penal Code section 288, they are convicted of violating subdivision (1) of section 314 (indecent exposure). If convicted of these felony crimes, offenders face imprisonment in state prison.

In addition, if an individual exposes him or herself indecently after entering a home without the homeowner's consent, then the offender could be imprisoned in state prison or a county jail for up to one year. The penalties may also be more severe if you exposed yourself in front of children.

While the possibility of jail time is a concern for many individuals charged with indecent exposure, the likelihood of being required to register as a sex offender in California is a more lasting consequence. Under Penal Code section 290, those convicted of indecent exposure will be required to register as sex offenders for the rest of their lives while living in California and if they move to any other state. This requirement places a significant restriction on defendants' freedom of movement, on their ability to live where they desire, and on their ability to gain employment.

Reputable Lawyer for Indecent Exposure in San Jose

If you are facing an indecent exposure charge, do not hesitate to call the Law Offices of Erik Steven Johnson. Our dedicated and well-skilled lawyer will tenaciously represent you in court so you do not have to face the dismal repercussions of an indecent exposure conviction. Contact us at 408-246-3004, or contact us online. We proudly defend clients in Palo Alto, San Jose, Morgan Hill, and Santa Clara County.

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