Public Indecency (Indecent Exposure) Charges in GA

Public Indecency (Indecent Exposure) Charges in GA

Legal Definition of Public Indecency (or Indecent Exposure)

Public indecency, which is also referred to as indecent exposure, involves performing lewd acts intentionally in a public place. According to O.C.G.A. § 16-6-8, a person is guilty of public indecency if they perform any of the following acts in a public place.

  • Have sexual intercourse.
  • Expose your sexual organs.
  • Make a lewd appearance (i.e. appear in public partially or completely nude).
  • Caress or fondle someone else’s body in a lewd or indecent manner.

Can You Be Charged with Indecency for Acts Done in Your Home?

Yes, you can face indecent exposure charges even if you commit one of the aforementioned acts in your home. Legally, a public place is considered any place where your activities or conduct can be viewed by other people other than members of your family or household (see O.C.G.A. § 16-1-3). Therefore, if your blinds are open when you commit these acts or you are in plain view even if you are in your home/on your property, you can still be charged with public indecency.

Penalties for Public Indecency

Public indecency charges are typically considered misdemeanor offenses. In Georgia, misdemeanors are generally punished by:

  • probation for no more than 12 months, or
  • a fine of up to $1,000 and/or imprisonment for no more than 1 year.

As it relates to the offense of public indecency, jails and prisons are considered public places. If an inmate commits this offense, they can face an additional 12 months (or less) of imprisonment. It is also important to note that for third or subsequent violations of this offense, a person can be charged with a felony and will face imprisonment for 1-5 years. In instances where the person viewing the act is a minor, the offense is also considered a felony.

Do You Have to Register as a Sex Offender After an Indecent Exposure Conviction?

If you are convicted of or plead guilty to indecent exposure, you will likely have to register as a sex offender (whether the offense is classified as a misdemeanor or felony offense. To learn more about registration requirements, you can review O.C.G.A. § 42-1-12. An experienced attorney can also advise you and help you understand the potential consequences you face based on your specific case.

Charged with Public Indecency in Georgia? Contact Our Firm Today.

At Balbo & Gregg, Attorneys at Law, PC, our criminal defense attorneys have over 40 years of collective experience. If you have been charged with indecent exposure or a sex crime, we are equipped to help you develop a solid defense strategy and can work to help you mitigate the penalties or get the charges dismissed.

While we provide our clients with individualized strategies that account for the unique circumstances and details of their cases, some general defense strategies include:

  • The person who viewed the conduct or act consented to its viewing.
  • The alleged offender lacked intent and the exposure was accidental.
  • The alleged offender did not intend the act to be sexual or lewd in nature.
  • The alleged offender did not commit the crime and is the victim of mistaken identity.

For protecting your rights and freedoms, let our attorneys provide you with the representation you need and deserve. Schedule a free case evaluation today by calling (866) 580-3089 or completing this online form.