The act of exposing your sexual organs in public may seem trivial. However, it is a serious offense in Florida. Between 2018 and 2019, 720 people were arrested for this crime. Under Florida Statute 800.03, exposure of sexual organs or indecent exposure is defined as the intentional and lewd exhibition of your genitals in a public place or someone else’s premises. The penalty for someone convicted of this crime can include jail time and a permanent criminal record.
If you have been accused of indecent exposure in Tampa, it is important that you seek legal advice, from a Tampa criminal defense attorney as soon as possible to limit the effect this conviction could have on you and your family’s life and future prospects.
Here at The Law Place, we know how to handle difficult cases such as these, and with lots of relevant experience, we can give you your best chance at reducing or even dismissing the charges against you. Contact us for a free case consultation.
Our phone lines are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call us today at (941) 444-4444.
How Florida Law Defines Indecent Exposure of Sexual Organs
It is illegal to expose your sexual organs in public or on someone else’s private property, according to Florida Statute 800.03. This includes showing your sexual organs in a vulgar or lewd manner close enough to someone’s private property that they can be seen.
You may only be naked in public in places specifically set apart for that purpose, such as a changing room or shower at a public swimming pool. A notable exception is breastfeeding, as mothers are allowed to expose their breasts in public for this purpose.
In a case where someone is accused of exposing their sexual organs, the prosecutor must establish that the exposure was conducted in a way that was lewd, lascivious, vulgar, or indecent. These terms essentially mean that the same thing: that the act was performed with an intent that was lustful, sensual, licentious, or wicked. An act can only be considered lewd or lascivious if it caused offense to another person or significantly affected another person’s rights.
Establishing Guilt in an Indecent Exposure Case
To convict someone of exposure of sexual organs in a criminal trial, the prosecution must be able to prove the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:
- The defendant exposed or exhibited their sexual organs.
- The exposure took place in a public place, or on someone else’s private property, or close enough to the private premises that they could be easily seen.
- The defendant had the clear intention of exposing or exhibiting their sexual organs in a vulgar, lewd, indecent, or lascivious manner.
- The exposure, exhibition, or nakedness was lewd, vulgar, or indecent.
To prove all of these elements beyond reasonable doubt can be difficult, even for an experienced prosecutor. With the right defense strategy, built by one of our criminal defense lawyers, you have a chance at giving rise to doubt on one or more of these elements and getting your case dismissed. Contact us today for free legal advice from one of our attorneys.
When Indecent Exposure Is Considered a Sex Crime in Florida
Here are some examples of what could be considered to be indecent exposure in Tampa, Florida:
- Intentionally exposing your sexual organs in a vulgar or indecent manner.
- Intentionally masturbating in public.
- Intentionally performing or simulating any sexual act where there is no physical contact with the alleged victim, such as sadomasochistic abuse and sexual bestiality.
For a person to be convicted, mere nudity is not enough. If a person is, for example, naked at the beach, this alone is not enough to convict someone of indecent exposure as there is a lack of lewd intention. For free advice about your case, contact us today so that we can explain what charges you may face.
The Penalties or Indecent exposure of Sexual Organs in Florida
The crime of exposure of sexual organs in Tampa and the rest of Florida is usually charged as a first-degree misdemeanor. The penalties for those convicted can include one year in jail, one year of probation, and a fine of up to $1,000.
A longer-lasting effect of this type of conviction is the permanent stigma attached to being accused of vulgar or indecent behavior. You may find that a sex crime conviction on your permanent record affects your job prospects, your access to housing, your ability to attend college or graduate school, or your access to professional licensing. Having a sex crime conviction can even mean that certain types of work are permanently off-limits to you, such as working with young or vulnerable people.
The severity of the penalty depends on other factors, too. For example, if you are a habitual offender or you already have a criminal record, then the penalties could be worse. This crime can then be considered a third-degree felony, which is punishable by up to 5 years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000 if the alleged victim is under the age of 16. If the alleged victim of indecent exposure is a current employee of the alleged offender, this would also be considered a third-degree felony offense, with the same potential penalties.
Whatever the details of your case, it is in your best interest to contact a criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible to give yourself the best chance of avoiding a criminal conviction and associated charges. Contact our team today for specialized and personalized advice.
Possible Defenses to Indecent Exposure in Tampa
If you have been accused of exposing your sexual organs in Tampa, it is recommended that you contact a criminal defense lawyer to help build a defense according to the circumstances of your case. There are many defenses available to contest a charge of indecent exposure in Florida. Some of the most common are:
- That the exposure was unintentional.
- That the defendant was breastfeeding.
- That the defendant was unaware of the presence of others or unaware of their visibility to others.
- That the act occurred on private property, and so there were no witnesses to the act.
Remember, nudity alone is not enough to hold a conviction. Cases where there was no sexually-oriented intent, such as appearing nude at the beach or covering part of one’s breasts with a cardboard sign at a protest, are examples of cases that are insufficient to sustain a conviction of indecent exposure.
Breastfeeding is another example in which this alone is not enough to sustain a conviction. Under Florida Statute 383.015, breastfeeding is a protected act. Therefore, a mother may breastfeed in any location where she is authorized to be, public or private, even if her nipple is uncovered during the act.
Our firm has a great deal of experience with cases such as these and can help give you a good chance at reducing the charges against you and reducing the impact that this sort of conviction could have on you and your family.
For free advice about your case and to find out more about how we can help you build a case to fight charges against you, call one of our criminal defense attorneys today.
The Role of a Criminal Defense Lawyer from The Law Place in Your Case
In any criminal case, the role of a criminal defense lawyer from The Law Place is multifaceted and vital to the client’s interests. Their involvement starts right from the initial stages of the legal process. They provide essential guidance, ensuring that their clients understand their rights and the charges against them. This early intervention can be crucial in setting the tone for the entire case.
One of the primary responsibilities of a criminal defense lawyer is to develop a strong defense strategy. This involves a meticulous examination of the case details, including the arrest procedure, evidence collection, and witness statements. By scrutinizing every aspect of the case, they aim to identify weaknesses in the prosecution’s argument and gather compelling evidence to support your defense.
Navigating the complexities of the legal system is another critical area where these lawyers provide immense value. They are well-versed in the nuances of criminal law and court procedures, ensuring that all filings are correctly handled and deadlines are met. Their knowledge and experience can be particularly beneficial in understanding and leveraging legal technicalities that could be pivotal in your case.
Negotiating with the prosecution is a key aspect of a criminal defense lawyer’s role. In many cases, they can negotiate plea deals that may reduce the severity of the charges or penalties. These negotiations require a deep understanding of the law and skilled advocacy, qualities that a lawyer from The Law Place brings to the table.
In the event of a trial, a criminal defense lawyer from The Law Place provides robust representation in court. They will articulate your defense effectively, cross-examine witnesses, and work tirelessly to sway the outcome in your favor. Their courtroom skills can often make a significant difference in the final verdict.
Beyond the legal aspects, these lawyers also offer emotional support to their clients. Facing criminal charges can be a stressful experience, and having a supportive lawyer can help alleviate some of this stress. They ensure that their clients are not only well-represented legally but also feel heard and understood throughout the process.
Tampa Exposure of Sexual Organs Lawyer, FAQ
What constitutes lewd or lascivious exhibition under Tampa law?
Lewd or lascivious exhibition in Tampa involves intentionally exposing one’s sexual organs in a manner that is overtly sexual and offensive to others, often in a public setting. This can include acts that are considered publicly indecent or sexually provocative.
Can someone be labeled a sex offender for sexual organs exposure?
Yes, someone can be labeled a sex offender for sexual organs exposure, especially if the act is deemed to be lewd or lascivious and occurs in the presence of a minor or in a public setting. This designation has significant and long-lasting consequences.
How are sex crime charges handled for sexual organ exposure in Tampa?
Sex crime charges for sexual organ exposure in Tampa are taken very seriously. These charges can range in severity and may include indecent exposure or lewd and lascivious conduct. The specifics of the case, including the defendant’s intent and the context of the act, play a significant role in how charges are pursued.
What constitutes a criminal offense for exposure of sexual organs in Tampa?
A criminal offense for exposure of sexual organs in Tampa is defined as the deliberate exposure of one’s genitalia in a public space or in a manner that is offensive or deemed inappropriate. The intent behind the act and its public nature are key factors in determining criminality.
What are the penalties for exposure of a sexual organ as a first degree misdemeanor in Tampa?
Exposure of a sexual organ as a first degree misdemeanor in Tampa can result in penalties of up to one year in jail, fines, and potentially being registered as a sex offender. The penalties may vary based on the circumstances and the presence of any prior offenses.
Can a seemingly innocent act lead to indecent exposure charges in Tampa?
Yes, a seemingly innocent act can sometimes lead to indecent exposure charges in Tampa if it is misinterpreted or if it accidentally results in the exposure of sexual organs in a public setting. Context and intent are crucial in these cases.
How does lascivious molestation differ from other indecent acts in Tampa?
Lascivious molestation in Tampa specifically involves inappropriate sexual contact or activity with a minor and is treated as a more serious offense compared to other indecent acts. It carries stricter penalties, including potential felony charges.
What defense strategies are available for sex crimes involving sexual organs exposure in Tampa?
Defense strategies for sex crimes involving sexual organs exposure in Tampa may include challenging the evidence, arguing lack of intent, proving the act was not public or offensive, or demonstrating that the exposure was accidental.
How serious is a sexual organs charge under Tampa’s sex offenses laws?
A sexual organs charge under Tampa’s sex offenses laws is a serious matter. Depending on factors such as the context of the act and the presence of minors, it can lead to severe repercussions, including jail time, fines, and mandatory registration as a sex offender.
Speak to an Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney From The Law Place Today
A conviction for the crime of indecent or vulgar exposure can have a serious and long-lasting impact on your life that extends past the fines and possible jail time. If convicted of a sex crime, this will remain on your permanent criminal record and could reduce your ability to access housing and certain employment in the future. This type of conviction also comes with a serious stigma that could further affect you and your family in many ways. This is why it’s so important to have the right legal representation.
Contact The Law Place today to speak to an experienced criminal defense lawyer about the specifics of your case and to see how we could help you to build a strong defense case. After a free telephone consultation, we hope you will decide to work with us throughout the process.
We will then immediately get to work on your case, with over 75 years of combined legal experience on our side, to fight your corner and give you your best chance at achieving a positive outcome for your case.
Our phone lines are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call us today at (941) 444-4444.