Open and gross lewdness and lascivious behavior is a felony in Massachusetts (M.G.L. c 272 s 16). Anyone convicted of open and gross lewdness and lascivious acts faces up to 3 years in state prison. Anyone convicted of this charge in Massachusetts must register as a sex offender. The statute of limitations is 6 years.
Open and gross cases are treated seriously in MA. In addition to the typical penalties, a felony conviction carries it also requires a sex offender registration. A criminal attorney can help to defend against charges like open and gross behavior in MA.
What is Open and Gross Lewdness and Lascivious Behavior?
The district attorney must prove five elements beyond a reasonable doubt to convict someone for committing open and gross act.
- One exposed their genitals or buttocks or female breasts to at least one person;
- On purposes or intentionally;
- Openly, intentional public exposure or a recklessly disregarded risk of public exposure;
- Also, It would shock a reasonable person;
- And the person was actually shocked or alarmed by the act
An important element of open and gross is the open element. Here, the prosecutor needs to prove the act was done in an open way. That means the prosecutor must prove it was the defendant’s intent to be seen. Also, the statute does not require this to happen in a public place. This requirement is met if the act was intended to be seen.
In order to prove alarm or shock the prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt the person had a serious negative emotional experience. Also, shock or alarm is more than just nervousness or fear.
Defenses to Open and Gross Lewdness and Lascivious Behavior?
An experienced Massachusetts criminal attorney can help defend sex crimes like open and gross. Also, a criminal lawyer can read the allegations and find the strongest defense.
Typical defenses to open and gross charges include defenses to the open and the shock element. For instance, it is a valid defense to argue a reasonable person would not be shocked.
Massachusetts Criminal Attorney
Mass Criminal Attorney Patrick Donovan has successfully represented clients charged with many crimes in Ma. Attorney Donovan has helped clients avoid convictions to this criminal charge.
Attorney Donovan was a prosecutor in Massachusetts. Further, he uses that training to get the best outcome for each of his clients.
Attorney Donovan has appeared in over fifty criminal courts in Massachusetts. Also, his law office is located in Quincy and he offers a free no-obligation consultation.