What Type of Punishment is Someone Looking at if They're Charged with Lewd Conduct in Los Angeles?
Lewd conduct can be defined in many different ways, but usually, somebody shows one of their body parts in public — some improper behavior. The crime of lewd conduct is described under California Penal Code 647(a).
Sometimes it's a touching of a minor. It can be a variety of different things, but the bottom line is this — you're facing jail time. You're facing potential sex registration and, obviously, the stigma and embarrassment that goes along with a lewd conduct charge.
Try getting a job if an employer knows you've been convicted of lewd conduct. Try dealing with your family and kids and coaching their sports if you've been charged and convicted of improper conduct.
So, to me, it's a grave crime, and there's a lot on the line. Your future is on the line. Your present is on the line. I think the key is; you want to do everything you can to defend the case if you have a defense.
Negotiating for Lesser Charge or Case Dismissal
You will want to try to have your attorney work out a resolution to continue with your life and hopefully be successful and put the lewd conduct charge behind you. But punishment-wise, in Los Angeles, the prosecutors are tough to deal with when it comes to improper conduct if they can prove it easily.
Sometimes people have defenses, and I'm able to do a lot of times. If we can get a not-guilty verdict and go to trial and win, then obviously, we do that. However, if we can't do that and don't think that's the best move moving forward, you're probably going to lose because of the evidence they have.
Often, I can put together a mitigation package, and we can avoid jail time. Maybe we can get a different charge than lewd conduct and prevent you from registering as a sex offender.
The problem with sex crimes, particularly lewd conduct, is that most of them you have to register as a sex offender, and that's probably the worst punishment related to a sex crime in Los Angeles county.
Avoiding Sex Offender Registration in California
So, what we try to do if we're going to work out a deal in the case is to get some agreement that prevents you from having to register as a sex offender. In other words, we're trying to work out some sort of a charge like a battery — just a simple battery. How about an assault?
There's a whole list of different charges that can be utilized in place of a lewd conduct charge in Los Angeles. So, if we can convince the prosecutors to give you a break, they first have to decide that you shouldn't have to register as a sex offender before they're even going to consider giving you a break.
If they decide that, they will often come up with a different charge — something other than lewd conduct, and then we can try to avoid that sex registration. That's one of the most extensive punishments we want to avoid.
Of course, nobody wants to go to jail. Now, in 2020, you've got the Coronavirus to worry about, but any time you get any sex-related offense, especially lewd conduct, the sheriffs are going to see what you're charged with.
Then, often, they'll let the other inmates know that you're charged with a sex crime, which puts you in an actual wrong position, or they'll treat you differently and more harshly than other inmates.
Experienced Los Angeles Sex Crime Lawyer
So, you want to try to avoid going into custody, as well, and there's a lot of different factors that decide whether you should go into captivity related to some sex offense.
So, if you need help — you're being charged, or a loved one that you know is being charged with lewd conduct in Los Angeles, California — pick up the phone. Make the call. Ask to speak to Ron Hedding. I've handled hundreds of these types of cases all over LA county.
I've dealt with the prosecutors and the judges. I've worked for the DA's office for a while. I worked for a Superior Court judge for a time, and since 1994, I've handled this lewd conduct-type of charges. I know exactly what it takes to be successful.