We live in an integrated global society today where there can be multiple views on the same topic. For instance, “lewd and lascivious behaviour” for one person can be an acceptable action for someone else.
One century ago, almost everything you do on a regular basis would have been scandalous. Wearing shorts or sandals, showing skin below the elbow, waking up and rolling out of bed without putting together your makeup and hair … These were all inappropriate back then.
But today’s definition of “lewd” can get you charged with a crime, so you should pay attention to the legal standards, not society’s.
What Does “Lewd Conduct” Really Mean?
The term “lewd” refers to sexual desires that are considered offensive. Someone engaging in lewd behaviour would be acting indecently according to the law.
These vulgar and indecent acts aren’t always offensive to adults, especially when engaging in consensual sexual activities. However, if the behaviour is around a child, it is always offensive.
Children aren’t old enough to consent, and these behaviours can result in long-term psychological trauma. So, it’s crucial that there’s a legal standard that can be applied to define “lewd conduct.”
In general, any behaviour such as groping, exposing genitalia, touching someone else sexually or forcing them to touch you, or manipulating their body to touch you sexually are all lewd activities.
These have to be intentional or willful for the charge of lewd and lascivious molestation to stick. If you’ve been accused of this behaviour, get legal help today. This charge can have consequences that affect the rest of your life.
Keep in mind that each state defines lewd and lascivious acts differently. You’ll need to find an attorney in the state where the charge was recorded. There’s a significant difference between something like conduct between two teenagers, which could fall under Romeo and Juliet laws, and an adult with a child under 16.
Lewd Conduct is a Crime
No matter what state you’re in, lewd conduct is a crime. When it comes to determining the penalties, the distinctions of the situation will matter.
Depending on the details, an accusation of lewd conduct could be a misdemeanour, or it may become a felony with prison time.
Some of the factors that determine the overall punishment include the state where the offence was committed and the age of the victim at the time of the incident. The criminal background of the defendant is scrutinized, too.
The specific details will be analyzed closely. If there was any trauma, injury, or force, the defendant will likely face serious penalties, including jail time and a sexual offender label upon release.
That’s why it’s crucial to make sure you have an expert attorney to represent you should you get charged with lewd conduct. The tiniest detail can make an enormous difference in your judgment.
No one wants to end up on the wrong side of a sexual assault allegation. But if you find yourself in that position, whether you’re innocent or guilty, the legal help you get will determine your future.