What is the Lewd Conduct Law in California? What are the Defenses?

Lewd or dissolute conduct is covered in the California Penal Code Section 647. (It is  a completely separate and distinct Law  from Lewd Acts with a Child, California Penal Code 288)

Lewd Conduct  CPC Section 647 states:

Except as provided in subdivision (l), every person who commits any of the following acts is guilty of disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor:

(a)   Who solicits anyone to engage in or who engages in lewd or dissolute conduct in any public place or in any place open to the public or exposed to public view.

Many of the California Penal Code 647(a) “Lewd Conduct in Public” arrests involve undercover sting operations. It was a sting operation by the Fullerton Police Department in 2007 that led to the widely known arrest of a high school principal at Brea Dam Park in Orange County. Decoy police officers try to “bait” others by proposing a sexual act. Once accepted, you can be arrested. This is called entrapment.

What is Entrapment?

The legal definition of entrapment is:

The act of government agents or officials that induces a person to commit a crime he or she is not previously disposed to commit.

This means that Entrapment is available as a defense only when an agent of the state or federal government has provided the encouragement or inducement. Entrapment can serve as a legal defense in California Lewd Conduct cases  if you can prove that you only carried out your alleged offense because the police persuaded you into doing so. This means that if you successfully show that you were entrapped, the criminal charges against you may be dismissed.

If you have been the target of a police sting for suspects involved in Lewd Acts, Mr. Kanter is an experienced Criminal Defense Attorney who will give the individual attention and care you need to get through the stressful legal process  Call our office today at 619-330-5881 or fill out the secure mailing form  for free and discreet consultation.  We will outline your options and create a legal strategy to help you get the charges for  PC 647(a) Lewd Conduct entrapment cases dismissed.