Misdemeanor indecent exposure is a crime punishable by up to one year in jail.  The law provides that if the person was fondling his or her genitals, pubic area, buttocks or if the person is female, breasts, while indecently exposed, the person is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment of not more than two years.

There are three levels of indecent exposure crimes in Michigan.

(I) INDECENT EXPOSURE – MCL 750.335a(2)(a)

  • To be found guilty of indecent exposure contrary to MCL 750.335a(2)(a), the prosecutor must prove each of the following beyond a reasonable doubt.
  1. The individual knowingly made an open or indecent exposure of his or her person.
  2. The individual did this in a place under circumstances in which another person might reasonably have been expected to observe it and which created a substantial risk that someone might be offended or in a place where such exposure is likely to be an offense against your community’s generally accepted standards of decency and morality.
  1. (II) AGGRAVATED INDECENT EXPOSURE – MCL 750.335a(2)(b)
  1. The individual knowingly made an open or indecent exposure of his or her person.
  2. The individual was fondling his or her genitals, pubic area, buttocks, or, if the person is female, breasts.
  3. The individual did this in a place under circumstances in which another person might reasonably have been expected to observe it and which created a substantial risk that someone might be offended or in a place where such exposure is likely to be an offense against your community’s generally accepted standards of decency and morality.
  • The penalty for aggravated indecent exposure is:
  1. High court misdemeanor conviction punishable by up to 2 years in prison or a fine up to $2,000.00, or both.
  2. Sex Offender Registry as a Tier I offender if the victim is a minor.
  3. Sex Offender Registry as a Tier II offender if BOTH the victim is a minor AND the individual was already a Tier I offender.
  4. Sex Offender Registry as a Tier III offender if BOTH the victim is a minor AND the individual was already a Tier II offender.

(III) INDECENT EXPOSURE BY A SEXUALLY DELINQUENT PERSON – MCL 750.335a(2)(c)

  • To be found guilty of indecent exposure by a sexually delinquent person contrary to MCL 750.335a(2)(c), the prosecutor must prove each of the following beyond a reasonable doubt.
  1. The individual knowingly made an open or indecent exposure of his or her person.
  2. The individual did this in a place under circumstances in which another person might reasonably have been expected to observe it and which created a substantial risk that someone might be offended or in a place where such exposure is likely to be an offense against your community’s generally accepted standards of decency and morality.
  3. The individual is a “sexually delinquent person”, defined by MCL 750.10a as “any person whose sexual behavior is characterized by repetitive or compulsive acts which indicate a disregard of consequences or the recognized rights of others, or by the use of force upon another person in attempting sex relations of either a heterosexual or homosexual nature, or by the commission of sexual aggressions against children under the age of 16.”
  • The penalty for indecent exposure by a sexually delinquent person is:
  1. Felony conviction punishable by imprisonment for an indeterminate term, the minimum being 1 day in jail and the maximum being life in prison.
  2. Sex Offender Registry as a Tier I offender as a first offense.
  3. Sex Offender Registry as a Tier II offender if the offender was already a Tier I offender.
  4. Sex Offender Registry as a Tier III offender if the offender was already a Tier II offender.

Here are some examples when indecent exposure convictions were upheld:

  • “Open and indecent exposure” does not necessarily require a public place. A male was convicted of indecent exposure where he summoned a minor female to the bedroom of his own house and exposed his erect penis through the zipper of his shorts. People v Neal, 266 Mich App 654; 702 NW2d 696 (2005).
  • A witness does not actually have to see the exposure but rather the prosecutor must show that the exposure happened under conditions which another person “might reasonably have been expected to observe it”. A male was convicted of indecent exposure where he was sitting in the driver’s seat of a vehicle near an elementary school with his bare legs exposed and his right hand moving at his crotch but no witness could testify that they saw his genitalia. People v Vronko, 228 Mich App 649; 579 NW2d 138 (1998).

What is a sexually delinquent person in Michigan?

An individual whose sexual behavior is defined by any of the following:

  • Compulsive or repetitive acts indicating a disregard of consequences or the recognized rights of other people; or
  • The application of force upon other people in attempting to engage in sex acts; or
  • Committing sexual aggression against children under 16 years old.

At trial, the people must prove a person is a sexual delinquent beyond a reasonable doubt.

If you are charged with indecent exposure you need to hire a serious criminal defense attorney to represent you. The Criminal Defense Law Center of West Michigan can offer you such attorneys. It is easy to be accused falsely of this type of crime. Don’t wait to start your defense, call Shawn today at 616-438-6719!

Our Criminal Defense Lawyers in West Michigan Proudly Serve: Kent County, Ottawa County, Allegan County, Ionia County, Barry County, Berrien County, Mason County, Manistee County, Mecosta County, Oceana County, Muskegon County, Montcalm County, Newaygo County, Kalamazoo County, Lake County, Van Buren County, and the City of Grand Rapids, Michigan.

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