Lewd conduct is any unlawful act committed by a person with the purpose
of sexually arousing himself or herself, or even the individual towards
which this action is directed. In Missouri, lewd conduct crimes involve
sexual misconduct (commonly known as indecent exposure), which means exposing genitalia
to others in public.
Sexual misconduct in Missouri is a criminal offense that is divided into
three types with varying degrees of severity and associated penalties:
sexual misconduct in the first degree, sexual misconduct in the second
degree, and sexual misconduct involving a child.
First-degree sexual misconduct is defined as exposing one’s genitalia knowing it will likely alarm
another person, having sexual contact in the presence of others and causing
intentional alarm, or sexual intercourse in a public place in the presence
of other people. It is considered a
Class B misdemeanor, punishable by a maximum jail sentence of six months and a fine of up
to $500. However, if a person who committed first-degree sexual misconduct
has a prior conviction, then it is a
Class A misdemeanor, resulting in a maximum jail sentence of one year and a fine of up to $1,000.
Sexual misconduct in the second degree is requesting sexual conduct from someone else in a manner that will likely
cause alarm, which is also known as solicitation. It is considered a
Class C misdemeanor, which is punishable by a maximum jail sentence of 15 days and a fine
of up to $300.
sexual misconduct involving a child entails exposing one’s genitalia to a minor child under 15 years
of age knowing it will likely cause alarm, coercing a minor under 15 to
expose their genitalia for sexual gratification, or coercing a female
less than 15 years old to expose her breasts online or through electronic
means – such as text message – for the sexual gratification
of anyone. It is a
Class D felony, punishable by a maximum prison sentence of four years and a fine of up
to $5,000. However, if the defendant had a prior sex offense conviction,
then the crime of sexual misconduct involving a child is elevated to a
Class C felony, punishable by a maximum prison sentence of seven years.
If you are accused of sexual misconduct, such as indecent exposure,
contact our Springfield, MO criminal defense attorney at
Worsham Law Firm and request a
free consultation today.