California "Indecent Exposure" Law
Penal Code 314 PC

California Penal Code 314 PC prohibits the sex crime of "indecent exposure" . . . which means willfully exposing your genitals to someone else, motivated by a desire to sexually gratify yourself or offend the other person.1

California indecent exposure law is pretty broad and also vague...and can cover behavior that you might not have thought was criminal. If you are facing indecent exposure charges, you may be surprised and feel that your rights have been violated.

Interestingly, despite constant changes in what society considers "indecent," California's indecent exposure statute has remained virtually unchanged since its enactment in 1872.2

Here are some examples of behavior that can lead to California indecent exposure charges:

  • A female baring her breasts in a crowded restaurant in order to sexually gratify her boyfriend;
  • An adult male standing on a street corner "flashing" his genitals to females who walk by for sexual gratification purposes; and
  • A teenage boy exposing his genitals to elderly women walking out of a church with the goal of offending them.
Penalties

While a California "indecent exposure" conviction may not seem like a very serious offense, the repercussions can be devastating.

In most cases, a first indecent exposure conviction subjects you to misdemeanor penalties of up to six (6) months in county jail and a fine of up to one thousand dollars ($1,000).3 A second offense is a felony and can lead to a California state prison sentence.4

But perhaps worst of all...any Penal Code 314 PC conviction subjects you to a lifetime duty to register as a register as a California sex offender.5

Legal defenses

The good news is that a good California criminal defense attorney knows a variety of ways to beat an "indecent exposure" allegation.  There are a number of legal defenses that a skilled attorney can present on your behalf in an effort to get the "indecent exposure" charge reduced or even dismissed. Some of these defenses include:

  • You never actually exposed yourself,
  • You weren't aware of anyone else being present who would be offended, and / or
  • You were the victim of mistaken identity.

In order to help you better understand Penal Code 314 PC, California's indecent exposure statute, our Los Angeles sex crimes defense attorneys will address the following:

1. Legal Definition of California
Indecent Exposure
2. Penalties for Penal Code 314 PC
Indecent Exposure

2.1. Aggravated indecent exposure

2.2. Repeat offenders: automatic felony
indecent exposure

2.3. California "indecent exposure" and the duty to register as a sex offender

3. Legal Defenses Against Penal Code 314 PC Indecent Exposure Charges
4. Penal Code 314 PC and Related Offenses

4.1. Penal Code 647(a) PC "lewd conduct in public"

4.2. Penal Code 288 PC "lewd conduct with a minor"

4.3. Penal Code 459 PC "burglary"

4.4. Penal Code 602 PC "trespass"

4.5. Penal Code 415 PC "disturbing the peace"

If, after reading this article, you have additional questions, we invite you to contact us at Shouse Law Group.

You may also find helpful information in our related articles on Legal Definition of a Misdemeanor in California Law; Legal Definition of a "Wobbler" in California Law; Legal Definition of a Felony in California Law; Registration as a Sex Offender Pursuant to Penal Code 290 PC; Failure to Register as a Sex Offender Penal Code 290 PC; Criminal Arrests/Convictions & Doctor Discipline in California: Medical Board License Suspensions; Criminal Convictions & Dental Board License Discipline; Nurse Discipline and Nursing License Revocation in California; Common Legal Defenses to California Crimes; California Penal Code 647(a) PC "Lewd Conduct in Public"; California Penal Code 288 PC "Lewd Conduct with a Minor"; California Penal Code 459 PC "Burglary"; California Penal Code 602 PC "Trespass"; and California Penal Code 415 PC "Disturbing the Peace."

1. Legal Definition of California Indecent Exposure

The legal definition of "indecent exposure" revolves around several key facts that the prosecutor must prove. These are known as "elements of the crime."

Img-evidence-books

The elements of indecent exposure in California are:

  1. that you willfully exposed your genitals,
  2. in the presence of someone who might be offended or annoyed by your actions, AND
  3. that you intended to direct public attention to your genitals for the purpose of either
a. sexually gratifying yourself or someone else, OR

b. sexually offending someone else.6

Let's take a closer look at some of these terms in order to better understand the legal definition of indecent exposure in California law.

Willfully

You must "willfully" expose yourself in order to commit indecent exposure.  "Willfully" means willingly or on purpose...but it doesn't necessarily mean that you intended to break the law or hurt someone else.7

This means that accidentally exposing yourself will not suffice.

Example: While Peter is swimming in the ocean, his trunks get ripped, exposing his genitals. When Peter walks back on shore, everyone on the crowded beach sees his genitals, and many people are offended.

However, Peter did not commit the crime of indecent exposure...because he did not expose his genitals willfully.

Expose yourself or your "private parts"

To "expose" yourself means to reveal your naked body.  To expose your "private parts" means to reveal your bare genitals.  You do not commit indecent exposure if you

  • Expose your underwear (no matter how revealing),8 or
  • Reveal a female bare breast (regardless of whether it was revealed for sexual purposes or while breastfeeding).9

In the presence of someone who might be annoyed or offended

To commit the California crime of indecent exposure, you need to expose yourself

  • In the presence of another person,
  • Who might be offended or annoyed by the exposure.10

This is one place where clever California criminal defense attorneys will look for flaws in the prosecution's case.  Even if you were in a "public" area, if it was a secluded area (behind some bushes at a park, for example)...where you didn't believe others would see you...then the action probably doesn't meet the definition of indecent exposure.

But with respect to people being "offended or annoyed," California "indecent exposure" law doesn't take into account the "audience."  This means that exposing yourself to a prison guard, an undercover cop, or an unsuspecting young woman will all suffice for an "indecent exposure" conviction . . . assuming the prosecution proves the other elements of the crime.

Example: Joe, a prison inmate in a unit for sexually violent offenders, stands in his cell wearing only a T-shirt and masturbates while a female prison guard walks by. Because she works in the sex offender unit, the guard has training in sexual misbehavior and has witnessed incidents like this before.

However, Joe is still guilty of indecent exposure. The guard was less likely to be shocked by his behavior than many people . . . but that doesn't mean she wouldn't be offended or annoyed by it.11

With intent to direct public attention to your genitals

California Penal Code 314 PC requires that you specifically intend to draw attention to your genitals.12 This means that exposing your genitals isn't enough...they must be exposed with the intent of directing attention to them.

Example: Chad goes to an isolated public beach where he hopes to sunbathe nude. He takes off his clothes, lies on his back, and falls asleep. While he is sleeping, other people arrive at the beach. Eventually the police show up and arrest him.

Chad is not guilty of indecent exposure because he did not intend to direct public attention to his genitals...when he fell asleep, he assumed no one was going to see him.13
Img-beach-umbrella

But, importantly, if you do intend to draw attention to your genitals, prosecutors can still convict you of this offense even if no one actually sees them.14 This might be the case, for example, if you exposed yourself to someone in a dark alley.

For the purpose of sexual arousal or sexual offending

Simply exposing yourself...even if you intentionally draw public attention to your genitals...won't support a California Penal Code 314 "indecent exposure" conviction unless you do it with a "lewd" or sexually motivated intent. This can mean either

  • An intent to gratify or arouse yourself sexually,
  • An intent to gratify or arouse someone else sexually, or
  • An intent to offend someone else sexually.15
Example: Dallas, a teenager, stands on a street corner and "moons" (pulls down his pants to reveal his bare buttocks) cars that pass by. He is not guilty of Penal Code 314 PC indecent exposure...because the mooning was not sexually motivated, but was engaged in as a means of amusing or annoying people in a non-sexual way.16

Keep in mind that the prosecutor must satisfy each and every element of the offense before s/he can prove that you are guilty of Penal Code 314 "indecent exposure."  If even just one of the above elements isn't proven, you should not be held criminally liable for this charge.

It should also be noted that it's the California Legislature which controls this state's indecent exposure laws.  Although local ordinances may try to regulate their community's decency standards...if they are more restrictive than the corresponding California indecent exposure statute...the courts will declare them invalid.17

2. Penalties for Penal Code 314 PC
Indecent Exposure

For most first-time offenders under California's indecent exposure law, a Penal Code 314 PC violation is a misdemeanor offense.18

If convicted of "simple" misdemeanor indecent exposure, you may face

  • up to six (6) months in a county jail,
  • a maximum fine of one thousand dollars ($1,000),19 and
  • a lifetime duty to register as a sex offender pursuant to Penal Code 290 (we discuss this penalty more thoroughly in Section 2.3 below).20

2.1. "Aggravated" indecent exposure

You commit what is known as "aggravated" indecent exposure if you expose yourself

  • in an "inhabited" (lived-in) home, trailer, or building, and
  • you entered the home, trailer, or building without permission.21

This form of aggravated indecent exposure is a wobbler . . . which means that it may be charged as either a misdemeanor OR a felony, depending on the prosecutor's choice.

If aggravated indecent exposure is charged as a misdemeanor, this offense subjects you to the same penalties described above . . . but your maximum jail sentence increases to one (1) year.22

But if your aggravated indecent exposure charges are felony charges, you may face

  • sixteen (16) months, two (2) years or three (3) years in the California State Prison,23
  • up to ten thousand dollars ($10,000) in fines,24 and
  • a lifetime duty to register as a sex offender.25
Img-failure-to-register-cuffs

2.2. Repeat offenders: automatic felony indecent exposure

Finally, if you are either

  1. convicted of Penal Code 314 PC indecent exposure for a second or subsequent time, or
  2. suffer your first "indecent exposure" conviction . . . but have a prior conviction for Penal Code 288 PC "lewd acts with a minor,

you will necessarily be charged with felony indecent exposure...and may face the same penalties listed for felony aggravated indecent exposure above.26

2.3. California "indecent exposure" and the duty to register as a sex offender

As previously stated, one of the penalties for an indecent exposure conviction is the lifetime duty to register as a sex offender pursuant to Penal Code 290 PC.27 California law imposes this punishment regardless of whether you're convicted of Penal Code 314 PC as a misdemeanor or as a felony.

The Penal Code 290 PC lifetime registration requirement is an extremely harsh penalty. For one thing, it lasts for your entire life. For another, if you fail to comply with the registration requirement, you can be charged with the crime of failure to register as a sex offender.

Failing to register as a sex offender is a felony if you are required to register because of a felony indecent exposure conviction . . . and a misdemeanor if you are required to register because of a misdemeanor indecent exposure conviction.28 Penalties can include up to one (1) year in county jail . . . or up to three (3) years in state prison.29

It should be noted that most licensed professional associations discipline their members if they receive a California sex crime conviction that requires sex offender registration.  This is generally the case for

Img-stethoscope

However, a misdemeanor indecent exposure conviction sometimes acts as an exception to this rule.  If you are employed in one of these professions...or another profession that requires you to obtain and maintain a professional license...and you are convicted of misdemeanor indecent exposure, you may not automatically lose your professional license.30

3. Legal Defenses Against Penal Code 314 PC Indecent Exposure Charges

There are a variety of legal defenses to a California "indecent exposure" charge that a good sex crimes defense attorney may be able to present on your behalf.  The following are examples of some of the most common defenses.

Insufficient evidence

It bears repeating that, if the prosecution doesn't prove each and every element of a Penal Code 314 PC violation, you are not guilty of indecent exposure.  This means that if, for example, the evidence suggests that

  • there was no one around for you to offend,
  • your genitals were partially clothed,
  • you didn't act "lewdly", or
  • you didn't satisfy any of the other requirements of California's "indecent exposure" law,

then you may not be criminally liable for this offense.

False accusations / wrongful arrest

As Rancho Cucamonga criminal defense attorney Michael Scafiddi31 explains,

"Sex offenses are always ripe for false accusations.  They often require little proof...since many are based on "he said/she said" allegations...which makes it easy for someone seeking revenge, or acting out in anger or jealousy, to falsely accuse another person of a crime."

A skilled California sex crimes defense lawyer understands this and will always explore this possibility as a defense option.

Mistaken identity

Depending on the circumstances of the alleged offense, it is quite possible that even a well-meaning victim could have mistakenly identified you as the individual who unlawfully exposed him/herself.

Perhaps the alleged offense took place in a dark environment. Perhaps the perpetrator's face was partially hidden. Perhaps the victim's view of the perpetrator resembled you from the back. Perhaps you share the same name as the suspected "flasher".

There are a number of reasons why you could have been mistakenly identified as an "indecent exposure" culprit...and it's your California criminal defense attorney's job to convince the judge and/or jury of that very fact.

For a more detailed discussion, visit our article on mistaken witness identification as a legal defense in California criminal cases.

4. Penal Code 314 PC and Related Offenses

California's "indecent exposure" law is closely related to a variety of other offenses...either because they are frequently charged in connection with one another, or because similar behavior can trigger charges of either offense.

Some of these related offenses are:

4.1. Penal Code 647(a) PC "lewd conduct in public"

A California Penal Code 647(a) PC "lewd conduct in public" charge may arise when an individual touches him/herself or another person in public with sexual intent.32 It's the "touching" requirement that is the major difference between a 647(a) PC charge and an indecent exposure charge.

If you "indecently" expose yourself while you touch yourself or another person, prosecutors could charge you with both offenses.

Lewd conduct in public is a misdemeanor in California.33

As a practical matter, when a person is charged with lewd conduct in public, prosecutors often "tack on" an indecent exposure charge to raise the ante and gain leverage in the case. This is because lewd conduct convictions don't trigger a duty to register as a sex offender, whereas indecent exposure convictions do. In this situation, many defendants will gladly plead to the lewd conduct charge, if the prosecutor agrees to dismiss the indecent exposure charge, and thereby take the risk of sex registration off the table.

4.2. Penal Code 288 PC "lewd conduct with a minor"

California Penal Code 288 PC "lewd acts with a minor child" (sometimes confused with "lewd conduct in public") prohibits engaging in lewd conduct with a child who is under 14...or who is 14 or 15 and at least ten years younger than the accused.34

Like lewd conduct in public, the crime of "lewd acts with a child" requires some form of lewd touching, which distinguishes it from indecent exposure.35 However, if you expose yourself in front of a minor while touching him/her...you could be charged with both offenses.

Lewd conduct with a minor is a more serious offense than indecent exposure. It is a wobbler if the victim is 14 or 15...and a felony, carrying a potential prison sentence of up to eight (8) years, if the victim is under 14.36

4.3. Penal Code 459 PC "burglary"

California Penal Code 459 PC "burglary" is defined as entering any structure with the intent to commit a felony once inside.37

As we discussed above, if you enter a home, trailer, or other inhabited structure without permission and then commit indecent exposure...you may be charged with "aggravated" indecent exposure.38 And in this kind of case...the act of entering the structure can itself be the separate crime of California burglary.39

(Despite common misperception, a burglary doesn't necessarily involve stealing.  Entering a home or building intending to commit any felony once inside will suffice.40 )

Thus . . . while it may seem odd that California Penal Code 459 PC "burglary" is related to California "indecent exposure" law . . . they are, in fact, sometimes connected.

Img-indecent-burglary

This means that if you enter a structure and then expose yourself, prosecutors could charge you with burglary and indecent exposure. AND, even if you don't actually succeed in committing indecent exposure once inside the house, you may still be charged with burglary if you had the intent to do so.41

California burglary of an inhabited structure is a felony. The penalty will be two (2), four (4) or six (6) years in California state prison.42

4.4. Penal Code 602 PC "trespass"

California Penal Code 602 PC "trespass" occurs when someone enters a building or other property without permission. It does not matter whether they intend to commit a felony once inside.43 California trespass is typically (but not always) a misdemeanor.44

Trespass charges may come into play if the prosecutor would like to charge you with aggravated indecent exposure and/or burglary for entering a house with the intent to commit indecent exposure...but s/he doesn't have enough evidence that you actually intended to commit indecent exposure.

Trespass can also be a useful plea bargain from an indecent exposure charge. If the prosecutor agrees to dismiss the indecent exposure charge in exchange for a plea to trespassing, you will have a much less serious conviction on your record...and you won't have to register as a sex offender.

4.5. Penal Code 415 PC "disturbing the peace"

California Penal Code 415 PC "disturbing the peace" may occur when someone behaves in a loud, belligerent, or offensive way in public.45

Although "disturbing the peace" isn't technically related to indecent exposure, it is frequently used as a plea bargaining tool by indecent exposure criminal defense attorneys.  This is because pleading guilty to a "disturbing the peace" charge will not subject you to the duty to register as a sex offender.

Therefore, "disturbing the peace" is an offense that your California criminal defense lawyer may try to negotiate on your behalf . . . in exchange for the prosecution's dismissal of your Penal Code 314 PC "indecent exposure" charge.

Call Us for Help...
Img-call-m

If you or loved one is charged with Penal Code 314 PC indecent exposure and you are looking to hire an attorney for representation, we invite you to contact us at Shouse Law Group. We can provide a free consultation in office or by phone. We have local offices in Los Angeles, the San Fernando Valley, Pasadena, Long Beach, Orange County, Ventura, San Bernardino, Rancho Cucamonga, Riverside, San Diego, Sacramento, Oakland, San Francisco, San Jose and throughout California.

For more information on Nevada "indecent exposure" laws, please visit our page on Nevada "indecent exposure" laws.

Legal References:

1 California Penal Code 314 PC - Lewd or obscene conduct; indecent exposure. ("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. Every person who violates subdivision 1 of this section after having entered, without consent, an inhabited dwelling house, or trailer coach as defined in Section 635 of the Vehicle Code, or the inhabited portion of any other building, is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison, or in the county jail not exceeding one year. Upon the second and each subsequent conviction under subdivision 1 of this section, or upon a first conviction under subdivision 1 of this section after a previous conviction under Section 288, every person so convicted is guilty of a felony, and is punishable by imprisonment in state prison.")

2 People v. Carbajal, (2003) 114 Cal.App.4th 978, 983.  ("Penal Code section 314 [California's "indecent exposure" law] was enacted in 1872 as section 311; no substantive changes have been made to subdivision 1 since that time.")

3 Penal Code 314 PC - Indecent exposure, endnote 1, above.

See also California Penal Code 19 PC - Punishment for misdemeanor; punishment not otherwise prescribed. ("Except in cases where a different punishment is prescribed by any law of this state, every offense declared to be a misdemeanor is punishable by imprisonment in the county jail not exceeding six months, or by fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both.")

4 Penal Code 314 PC, Indecent exposure, endnote 1, above.

5 Penal Code 290 PC - The Sex Offender Registration Act.  ("(a) Sections 290 to 290.023, inclusive, shall be known and may be cited as the Sex Offender Registration Act. All references to "the Act" in those sections are to the Sex Offender Registration Act. (b) Every person described in subdivision (c), for the rest of his or her life while residing in California, or while attending school or working in California, as described in Sections 290.002 and 290.01, shall be required to register with the chief of police of the city in which he or she is residing, or the sheriff of the county if he or she is residing in an unincorporated area or city that has no police department, and, additionally, with the chief of police of a campus of the University of California, the California State University, or community college if he or she is residing upon the campus or in any of its facilities, within five working days of coming into, or changing his or her residence within, any city, county, or city and county, or campus in which he or she temporarily resides, and shall be required to register thereafter in accordance with the Act. (c) The following persons shall be required to register: ...subdivision 1 or 2 of Section 314 [California's "indecent exposure" law]...")

6 Judicial Council of California Criminal Jury Instructions ("CALCRIM") 1160 - Indecent Exposure. ("To prove that the defendant is guilty of this crime, the People must prove that: 1. The defendant willfully exposed (his/her) genitals in the presence of another person or persons who might be offended or annoyed by the defendant's actions; [AND] 2. When the defendant exposed (himself/herself), (he/she) acted lewdly by intending to direct public attention to (his/her) genitals for the purpose of sexually arousing or gratifying (himself/herself) or another person, or sexually offending another person(;/.) <Give element 3 if defendant charged with entering inhabited dwelling.> [AND] [3. The willful and lewd exposure occurred after the defendant had entered an inhabited (dwelling house/part of a building/trailer coach) without consent.]")

7 See same, Indecent Exposure. ("Someone commits an act willfully when he or she does it willingly or on purpose. It is not required that he or she intend to break the law, hurt someone else, or gain any advantage.")

8 People v. Massicot, (2002) 97 Cal.App.4th 920, 932. ("Our construction of the phrase "[e]xposes his person" in section 314 comports with the common law offense of indecent exposure, which requires one to expose his or her genitals. . . . Because Massicot did not display his bare genitals at any time to his victim, his convictions under section 314 must be reversed.")

9 Robins v. Los Angeles County, (1967) 248 Cal.App.2d 1, 10.  ("Thus, we are constrained to the view that the display of the bare female bosom, whether defined as 'entertainment' or not, does not violate state [indecent exposure] law, is not regulated by the state, and does not constitute criminal sexual activity in the area definitively preempted by the state.")

See also California Civil Code 43.3 -- Breastfeeding; location.  ("Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a mother may breastfeed her child in any location, public or private, except the private home or residence of another, where the mother and the child are otherwise authorized to be present.")

10 See CALCRIM 1160 - Indecent Exposure, endnote 6, above.

11 Noble v. Harrison, (C.D.Cal. 2007) 491 F.Supp.2d 950, 958. ("Specifically, the California Court of Appeal held: '[Petitioner] argues, without citation to authority, that the female jail employees assigned to the SVP dormitory are not "present to be offended or annoyed" as a matter of law because they "[m]ust expect, through their training, male inmates to exhibit sexually deviant acts without being 'offended or annoyed.' " We find no merit in the argument. As respondent points out, [P.C.] section 314, subdivision 1 does not have an exception eliminating jail or prison personnel as potential victims of indecent exposure. The fact, if it be the fact, that this conduct may be common in the SVP unit does not mean that the female staff cannot be "annoyed or offended" within the meaning of [P.C.] section 314 as a matter of law.' . . . This Court is bound by the California Court of Appeal's interpretation of P.C. § 314(1).")

12 See CALCRIM 1160 - Indecent Exposure, endnote 6, above.

13 In re Smith, (1972) 7 Cal.3d 362, 366. ("From the foregoing definitions and cases the rule clearly emerges that a person does not expose his private parts "lewdly" within the meaning of section 314 unless his conduct is sexually motivated. Accordingly, a conviction of that offense requires proof beyond a reasonable doubt that the actor not only meant to expose himself, but intended by his conduct to direct public attention to his genitals for purposes of sexual arousal, gratification, or affront.")

14 See CALCRIM 1160 - Indecent Exposure, endnote 6, above. ("[It is not required that another person actually see the exposed genitals.]")

See also People v. Carbajal, (2003) 114 Cal.App.4th 978, 986.  ("Our review of the common law and cases from other jurisdictions leads us to conclude that a conviction for indecent exposure under Penal Code section 314, subdivision 1 requires evidence that a defendant actually exposed his or her genitals in the presence of another person, but there is no concomitant requirement that such person actually must have seen the defendant's genitals. Thus, we will uphold defendant's conviction for indecent exposure in the absence of evidence of any direct visual observation of his genitals so long as there is sufficient circumstantial evidence to show that actual exposure occurred.")

15 See CALCRIM 1160 - Indecent Exposure, endnote 6, above.

16 In re Dallas W., (2000) 85 Cal.App.4th 937, 938.  ("The juvenile court found this was "a mooning case," and that Dallas had "exposed his buttocks ... with the intent to annoy and affront people." The court specifically found that Dallas did not act with "sexual intent in the sense that he intended to arouse himself or a third person by his act. I think he did it strictly to annoy and to affront people." The petition was nevertheless sustained, and Dallas was made a ward of the court. He appeals. Because the court found Dallas acted without any sexual intent, we reverse [his indecent exposure conviction].")

17 Spitcauer v. Los Angeles County, (1964) 227 Cal.App.2d 376, 379.  ("'It has been suggested that the ordinance was not intended to create a crime in addition to that punishable by state law but was designed and is enforced as a law against prostitution where prostitution is difficult to prove. This view of the ordinance, however, makes it even clearer that the local regulation is invalid. There can be no question that the Legislature has occupied the field with respect to the crime of prostitution. (Pen.Code, § 647, subd. (b).) (Emphasis added.) Likewise, it is unquestionable that the Legislature has occupied the field with respect to pornography (Penal Code, §§ 311 to 312) and perversion (Penal Code, § 288a). Finally, it may be noted that Penal Code section 314, subdivision 2 [relating to indecent exposure], expressly relates to every person who '[p]rocures ∗ ∗ ∗ any person ∗ ∗ ∗ [to] take part in any model artist exhibition, ∗ ∗ ∗ such as ∗ ∗ ∗ is adapted to excite to vicious or lewd thoughts or acts, ∗ ∗ ∗' and sections 315 and 316 proscribe the keeping of houses 'for the purposes of prostitution or lewdness ∗ ∗ ∗.'")

18 Penal Code 314 PC - Indecent exposure, endnote 1, above.

19 Penal Code 19 PC -- Punishment for misdemeanor; punishment not otherwise prescribed.  ("Except in cases where a different punishment is prescribed by any law of this state, every offense declared to be a misdemeanor is punishable by imprisonment in the county jail not exceeding six months, or by fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both.")

20 Penal Code 290 PC - The Sex Offender Registration Act, endnote 5, above.

21 Penal Code 314 PC - Indecent exposure, endnote 1, above.

22 See same, Indecent exposure.

23 See same, Indecent exposure.

See also Penal Code 18 PC - Felony punishment.  ("Except in cases where a different punishment is prescribed by any law of this state, every offense declared to be a felony [including felony aggravated indecent exposure], or to be punishable by imprisonment in a state prison, is punishable by imprisonment in any of the state prisons for 16 months, or two or three years...")

24 California Penal Code 672 PC - Offenses for which no fine prescribed; fine authorized in addition to imprisonment.  ("Upon a conviction for any crime punishable by imprisonment in any jail or prison, in relation to which no fine is herein prescribed, the court may impose a fine on the offender not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000) in cases of misdemeanors or ten thousand dollars ($10,000) in cases of felonies [including felony indecent exposure], in addition to the imprisonment prescribed.").

25 Penal Code 290 PC - The Sex Offender Registration Act, endnote 5, above.

26 California Penal Code 314 - Indecent exposure.  ("Upon the second and each subsequent conviction under subdivision 1 of this section, or upon a first conviction under subdivision 1 of this section after a previous conviction under Section 288, every person so convicted is guilty of a felony, and is punishable by imprisonment in state prison.")

27 Penal Code 290 PC - The Sex Offender Registration Act, endnote 5, above. ("(b) Every person described in subdivision (c), for the rest of his or her life while residing in California, or while attending school or working in California, as described in Sections 290.002 and 290.01, shall be required to register with the chief of police of the city in which he or she is residing, or the sheriff of the county if he or she is residing in an unincorporated area or city that has no police department, and, additionally, with the chief of police of a campus of the University of California, the California State University, or community college if he or she is residing upon the campus or in any of its facilities, within five working days of coming into, or changing his or her residence within, any city, county, or city and county, or campus in which he or she temporarily resides, and shall be required to register thereafter in accordance with the Act. (c) The following persons shall be required to register: ...subdivision 1 or 2 of Section 314 [California's "indecent exposure" law]...")

28 Penal Code 290.018 PC - Sex Offender Registration Act: Penalties for violation. ("(a) Any person who is required to register under the Act based on a misdemeanor conviction [such as misdemeanor indecent exposure] or juvenile adjudication who willfully violates any requirement of the act is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year. (b) Except as provided in subdivisions (f), (h), and (j), any person who is required to register under the act based on a felony conviction [such as felony indecent exposure] or juvenile adjudication who willfully violates any requirement of the act or who has a prior conviction or juvenile adjudication for the offense of failing to register under the act and who subsequently and willfully violates any requirement of the act is guilty of a felony and shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for 16 months, or two or three years.")

29 See same.

30 California Business and Professions Code 2221 BPC -- Denial of physician's and surgeon's certificate.  ("(c) The board shall deny a physician's and surgeon's certificate to an applicant who is required to register pursuant to Section 290 of the Penal Code. This subdivision does not apply to an applicant who is required to register as a sex offender pursuant to Section 290 of the Penal Code solely because of a misdemeanor conviction under Section 314 of the Penal Code [California's "indecent exposure" law].")

See also California Business and Professions Code 2660.5 BPC -- Denial of license or approval; registered sex offenders; exception.  ("The board shall deny a physical therapist license or physical therapist assistant approval to an applicant who is required to register pursuant to Section 290 of the Penal Code. This section does not apply to an applicant who is required to register as a sex offender pursuant to Section 290 of the Penal Code solely because of a misdemeanor conviction under Section 314 of the Penal Code [California's "indecent exposure" law].")

See also California Business and Professions Code 1687 BPC -- Denial, revocation or suspension of registered sex offenders' licenses; exceptions.  ("(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, with regard to an individual who is required to register as a sex offender pursuant to Section 290 of the Penal Code, or the equivalent in another state or territory, under military law, or under federal law, the board shall be subject to the following requirements: (1) The board shall deny an application by the individual for licensure pursuant to this chapter. (2) If the individual is licensed under this chapter, the board shall revoke the license of the individual. The board shall not stay the revocation and place the license on probation. (3) The board shall not reinstate or reissue the individual's licensure under this chapter. The board shall not issue a stay of license denial and place the license on probation...(b) This section shall not apply to any of the following:...(2) An individual who is required to register as a sex offender pursuant to Section 290 of the Penal Code solely because of a misdemeanor conviction under Section 314 of the Penal Code [California's "indecent exposure" law]. However, nothing in this paragraph shall prohibit the board from exercising its discretion to discipline a licensee under other provisions of state law based upon the licensee's conviction under Section 314 of the Penal Code.")

31 Rancho Cucamonga criminal defense attorney Michael Scafiddi is a former law enforcement officer. He now uses that inside knowledge to help defend clients accused of California sex crimes, including indecent exposure, as well as other criminal charges in San Bernardino and Riverside Counties. Scafiddi routinely makes appearances at the Murrieta Southwest Justice Center and in Fontana, the Banning Courthouse, the Barstow Courthouse, the Palm Springs Courthouse, and the Joshua Tree Courthouse.

32 Penal Code 647(a) PC - Lewd conduct in public [may be charged along with indecent exposure].  ("Every person who commits any of the following acts is guilty of disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor: (a) Who solicits anyone to engage in or who engages in lewd or dissolute conduct in any public place or in any place open to the public or exposed to public view.")

See also CALCRIM 1161 - Lewd conduct.  ("To prove that the defendant is guilty of this crime, the People must prove that: [1] The defendant willfully engaged in the touching of ((his/her) own/ [or] another person's) genitals, buttocks, or female breast [this element is the main difference between this offense and indecent exposure]; [2] The defendant did so with the intent to sexually arouse or gratify (himself/herself) or another person, or to annoy or offend another person;  [3] At the time the defendant engaged in the conduct, (he/she) was in (a public place/ [or] a place open to the public [or to public view]); [4] At the time the defendant engaged in the conduct, someone else who might have been offended was present; AND [5] The defendant knew or reasonably should have known that another person who might have been offended by (his/her) conduct was present.")

33 See same, Lewd conduct in public.

34 California Penal Code 288 PC -- Lewd acts with a minor [may be charged along with indecent exposure].  ("(a) Any person who willfully and lewdly commits any lewd or lascivious act, including any of the acts constituting other crimes provided for in Part 1, upon or with the body, or any part or member thereof, of a child who is under the age of 14 years, with the intent of arousing, appealing to, or gratifying the lust, passions, or sexual desires of that person or the child, is guilty of a felony and shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for three, six, or eight years....(c)(1) Any person who commits an act described in subdivision (a) with the intent described in that subdivision, and the victim is a child of 14 or 15 years, and that person is at least 10 years older than the child, is guilty of a public offense and shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for one, two, or three years, or by imprisonment in a county jail for not more than one year. In determining whether the person is at least 10 years older than the child, the difference in age shall be measured from the birth date of the person to the birth date of the child. (2) Any person who is a caretaker and commits an act described in subdivision (a) upon a dependent person, with the intent described in subdivision (a), is guilty of a public offense and shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for one, two, or three years, or by imprisonment in a county jail for not more than one year.")

35 See same, Lewd acts with a minor [may be charged along with indecent exposure].

36 See same, Lewd acts with a minor [may be charged along with indecent exposure].

37 Penal Code 459 PC - Burglary.  ("Every person who enters any house, room, apartment, tenement, shop, warehouse, store, mill, barn, stable, outhouse or other building...with intent to commit grand or petit larceny or any felony [including California Penal Code 314 PC "indecent exposure"] is guilty of burglary.")

38 Penal Code 314 PC - Indecent exposure, endnote 1, above.

39 Penal Code 459 PC - Burglary, endnote 37, above.

40 Penal Code 459 PC - Burglary, endnote 37, above.

41 People v. Rehmeyer, (1993) 19 Cal.App.4th 1758, 1769.  ("Evidence was presented that Rehmeyer entered the residence of Brenda C. with the specific intent to lewdly expose himself [within the meaning of California Penal Code 314 "indecent exposure"]. This was sufficient to sustain a conviction of burglary. Whether the act of exposure was actually accomplished is irrelevant to the burglary count; burglary is completed when entry is made with the requisite intent.")

42 Penal Code 461 PC - Punishment for burglary [including burglary with intent to commit indecent exposure]. ("Burglary is punishable as follows: (a) Burglary in the first degree: by imprisonment in the state prison for two, four, or six years.")

43 Penal Code 602 PC - Trespasses constituting misdemeanors; enumeration [may be charged along with or in lieu of indecent exposure].

44 See same.

45 Penal Code 415 PC - Fighting; noise; offensive words [may be pled to instead of indecent exposure].  ("Any of the following persons shall be punished by imprisonment in the county jail for a period of not more than 90 days, a fine of not more than four hundred dollars ($400), or both such imprisonment and fine: (1) Any person who unlawfully fights in a public place or challenges another person in a public place to fight. (2) Any person who maliciously and willfully disturbs another person by loud and unreasonable noise. (3) Any person who uses offensive words in a public place which are inherently likely to provoke an immediate violent reaction.")

Free attorney consultations...

Our attorneys want to hear your side of the story. Contact us 24/7 to schedule a FREE consultation with a criminal defense lawyer. We may be able to get your charges reduced or even dismissed altogether. And if necessary, we will champion your case all the way to trial.

Regain peace of mind...

Our defense attorneys understand that being accused of a crime is one of the most difficult times of your life. Rely on us to zealously and discreetly protect your rights and to fight for the most favorable resolution possible.

Office Locations

Shouse Law Group has multiple locations all across California and Nevada. Click Office Locations to find out which office is right for you.

Call us 24/7 (888) 327-4652