Minnesota Public Indecency: What Is it & When Can Someone Be Charged?

woman with a blanket

We’ve all seen movies where someone comically loses all their clothes while in public; however, a similar real-life scenario could end in criminal charges instead of a sheepish grin. Not many people know what constitutes indecent exposure under Minnesota law, so it’s a good idea to read this blog in its entirety to find out for yourself.

Minnesota Statute §617.23 Indecent Exposure

A person who commits any of the following acts in any public place, or in any place where others are present, is guilty of a misdemeanor:

(1) willfully and lewdly exposes the person’s body, or the private parts thereof;

(2) procures another to expose private parts; or

(3) engages in any open or gross lewdness or lascivious behavior, or any public indecency other than behavior specified in this subdivision.

A person who commits any of those acts in the presence of a minor under the age of 16, or have a previous criminal sexual misconduct conviction, is guilty of a gross misdemeanor. In certain situations, indecent exposure can even reach felony level.

While there may be defenses for a charge of indecent exposure, there is one absolute exception to this law. Minnesota law recognizes that it is not indecent exposure for a woman to breastfeed.

Charged with Indecent Exposure?

Indecent exposure charges are subjective in nature, so if you or a loved one are charged with indecent exposure, our firm can help. Our experienced criminal defense attorneys will fight to ensure the best outcome for you and your case.

Call (612) 444-5020 now for a free consultation!

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