Indecent exposure is a common charge in Michigan. This article is an outline of what indecent exposure means, the penalties, and how you can fight the charges.
The law says a person shall not knowingly make any open or indecent exposure of his or her person or of the person of another. This is a misdemeanor, punishable by up to 1 year in jail and fines.
Indecent exposure where a person has fondled his or her private parts is a high-court misdemeanor, punishable by up to 2 years in jail and fines. MCL 750.335a.
What Does Indecent Exposure Mean?
A person can be convicted of either an open or indecent exposure. So, there are two kinds of exposures, though the concepts are similar.
An open exposure is where a person’s private parts are exposed and where another person could be reasonably expected to see the exposure and would reasonably be offended.
Indecent exposure is the intentional exposure of one’s private parts and where the exposure is likely an offense against the generally accepted standards of the community.
Do You Have to be in Public?
A person does not have to be in public for an indecent exposure conviction. There is nothing in the law that requires the person be in public. A person could be convicted of indecent exposure while in a private home. Of course, in the privacy of your own home it is much more difficult to reasonably expect someone to see you. This is why most indecent exposure cases are in public.
What if the Person is in Public but Not Seen?
A person could be convicted of indecent exposure for an exposure in public that is not seen by anyone else. Again, the question is whether another person could reasonably be expected to see the exposure and expected to be offended.
Fighting Indecent Exposure Charges
No one wants an indecent exposure charge on their record. Despite the broadness of the law, there is a lot of room to challenge indecent exposure charges. The facts of the individual case must be analyzed, as every case is different. Questions to analyze:
- Where was the person?
- Was there a knowingly made exposure?
- What was the person’s intent?
- Could anyone reasonably be expected to see the exposure?
- What was the context of where the person was?
- What were other people in the area doing?
Don’t simply walk into court and plead guilty before speaking with a criminal attorney about your options. Everyday we focus on how to beat cases just like yours.
Call ArborYpsi Law
Sam Bernstein is a Criminal Defense Lawyer in Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti.
ArborYpsi Law is located at 4158 Washtenaw Ave., Ann Arbor, MI 48108.
Learn More on the Law
- People v. Neal: Indecent Exposure Law
- People v. Williams: “Open” v. “Indecent” Exposure
- People v. Vronko: Need to be Seen for an Indecent Exposure Conviction?
- People v. Gagnon: Disorderly Conduct – Disorderly Intoxication Law in Michigan
ArborYpsi Law Focuses on Criminal Defense
Have you been charged with indecent exposure? We will proactively fight your case from our first meeting. We will draw a plan of action focusing on your goals. Call us to set up a free initial consultation. We will sit down to discuss the law and your options.
Criminal defense is all we do. Everyday we represent people charged with crimes such as drunk driving and OWI, embezzlement, drug possession, and assault and battery. We are familiar with the defenses and angles of these cases, and will draw upon our experience to get you the best results.
Many lawyers practice criminal defense as one of many areas of law they practice. Not us. We only practice criminal defense. This allows us to focus our energy and abilities to one goal – ensuring results in your case.