There is a lot on the line for a person who has been accused of exposing themselves to a child. The accusation alone can have a serious impact on a person’s career and their rights as a parent. Even if a person has no contact with a child and is just accused of exposing themselves, they can still face severe penalties if convicted. These penalties include prison time, hefty fees and registering as a sex offender. Indecency with a child is a serious charge that should never be taken lightly because the criminal justice system in Texas can be harsh when it comes to alleged sex offenders.
Exposure to a child is a felony offense that can follow a person who is convicted for the rest of their life. Not only will they become a felon, but they will also have a hard time getting certain jobs and educational opportunities because they have a sex crime with a child on their record. The most important thing a person can do if they have been arrested or charged with exposure to a child is to contact an experienced sex crimes lawyer.
If you or someone you know has been charged with Exposure to a child contact The Gonzalez Law Group to discuss all of your legal options. Do not feel discouraged because of your situation. Just because you have been accused it doesn’t automatically mean you are guilty. Marco Gonzalez and his team of professional lawyers will work tirelessly to ensure you are treated fairly by the criminal justice system.
It is crucial that you contact The Gonzalez Law Group before you speak to any law enforcement officers regarding your indecency with a child charge. If you live in Harris County including Houston, Crosby, Deer Park, Cypress, Pasadena, and any other surrounding areas, contact The Gonzalez Law Group at (832) 530-4070 or fill out an online form for your free consultation.
Indecency with a Child (Exposure) Information Center
- Indecency with a Child (Exposure)
- Registering as a Sex Offender
- Resources for Indecency with a Child (Exposure)
Indecency with a Child (Exposure)
There is no statute of limitations for indecency with a child incident. It doesn’t matter if it happened yesterday or 30 years ago, a victim can come forward at any time. In Texas, indecency with a child is divided into two categories, both of which are felony convictions if found guilty. The two categories are exposure, which involves no contact with the child and sexual contact of a child.
Exposure to a child involves an adult exposing his or her anus or genitals to a child. It can also involve the adult causing the child to expose his or her anus or genitals. Both of these must be done with the explicit purpose of sexual gratification or arousal of the adult.
The state of Texas does allow certain affirmative defenses in an indecency with a child case. An affirmative defense is a set of facts, if proven by the defendant, that defeats the legal consequences of an unlawful act. The affirmative defenses allowed in Texas for indecency with a child include:
- The defendant was no more than three years older than the victim
- The defendant didn’t threaten, force or cause duress to the victim
- The defendant was the opposite sex of the victim
- The defendant was not a registered sex offender before committing the alleged offense
Penalties for indecency with a child conviction can be severe even if there is no prior criminal record. If a person is found guilty of exposing themselves to a child, they will be convicted of a third-degree felony. The punishment for a third-degree felony can include:
- Two to 10 years in prison
- A fine not to exceed 10,000
After prison, a person convicted of indecency with a child will be considered a felon and will have some of their basic rights stripped including the right to bear arms. The conviction will most likely follow them for the rest of their lives as they try to make a living or get an education.
Registering as a Sex Offender
An Indecency with a child felony conviction can result in serious penalties including prison time and hefty fines, but that’s not all. A sex crime involving a child also requires anyone convicted to register as a sex offender for at least ten years from when the court dismisses the criminal proceedings and discharges the offender. Even if the person charged with indecency with a child receives deferred adjudication or another pretrial diversion program they must still register as a sex offender. The following are the steps a person has to take to register as a sex offender in Texas.
Register with Local Law Enforcement
Any person who has to register as a sex offender in Texas must immediately go to their local law enforcement officers after release from prison to disclose their information. If the person does not live in a city, they must register with the county police.
The Texas Sex Offender Program requires local law enforcement to obtain the following information from a sex offender:
- Full name, date of birth, race, sex, height
- Driver’s license number, shoe size, home address
- A recent color photograph, complete set of fingerprints
- Type of offense, the age of the victim, date of conviction
- Disclosure of business, occupational or professional certificate, permit or license
- Employment status now and in the future
- Online identifiers
- Vehicle registration information
Registered sex offenders are required to report periodically to where they are registered to ensure all of their information is accurate and inform the police of any changes to their status including address, employment status, and probation status. If an offender moves to a different city or county, they must report to their new law enforcement office immediately.
Failure to Comply
Failure to comply with any registration requirement can result in a felony prosecution and/or violation of parole.
Public Notice of Sex Offenders
The registration process is not just to inform local law enforcement of a sex offender’s status. The program is designed to protect the public by providing them with sex offender information. The sex offender registry website provides detailed information to the public about every sex offender in the local area. The website offers a Texas top 10 offenders list, a subscription service for notification of new offenders, and a detailed search that allows anyone to search for offenders locally or by name.
Resources for Indecency with a Child (Exposure)
Sexaholics Anonymous-This link provides information on the organization, sexaholics anonymous. This group uses community organization to find solutions to the problems of lust, sex, and pornography addiction. Anyone struggling with a sexual addiction should seek help for their compulsion before it is too late.
Texas Sex Offender Program– This link provides information on the Texas Sex Offender Program. This program seeks to protect the public by publicly registering sex offenders. The Texas Department of Public Safety provides information on the process of registering as a sex offender and frequently asked questions.
Contact Our Firm
If you have been charged with exposure to a child in Harris County, it is in your best interest to contact The Gonzalez Law Group to help you through the legal process. The Lawyers at our firm will use their experience, knowledge, and resources to fight for you and help get the best possible result for your case. You don’t have to feel ashamed about your legal defense. You deserve a chance at redemption, especially if you feel like you have been falsely accused. If you live in Harris County including Friendswood, Pearland, Seabrook, League City, La Porte, Galena Park, Baytown, and any other surrounding area contact The Gonzalez Law Group at (832) 530-4070 today.