Obscenity charges could lead to mandatory sex offender registration in Oklahoma. Our experienced defense attorneys can help defend your case.
“Obscenity” is a very general term that refers to materials or acts which display or describe sexual activity in a manner appealing only to “prurient interest,” with no legitimate artistic, literary or scientific purpose. Pictures, writings, film or public acts which are found to be obscene are not protected by the free speech guarantee of the First Amendment, and may result in an obscenity charge in Oklahoma. If you are facing charges for obscene behavior in Oklahoma, don’t hesitate to contact our criminal defense lawyers at Oklahoma Legal Center. Our experienced attorneys can help you protect your legal rights throughout the course of your case.
Oklahoma Obscenity Charges
Obscenity is typically defined as a material or act which, to the average person, and taken as a whole: predominantly appeals to prurient interests; lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value; and depicts or describes nudity, sex or excretion in a patently offensive way. Obscene behavior, for instance, describes an act in which any person knowingly exposes his person or private parts in any public place, or in any place where other persons may become offended or annoyed. Obscene behavior can also be charged as a misdemeanor to any individual who advises or helps another person to expose himself or takes part in any conduct that is offensive to decency.
Understanding Obscenity Laws
All U.S. states have laws governing the distribution of obscene materials which prohibit the sale, lending, renting, publication or exhibition of materials, with general knowledge of their obscene character and content. These “materials” are typically defined as any writing, written matter, picture, film, motion picture or sound recording, although some states have made amendments to this statute to account for the electronic age. Oklahoma specifically prohibits the distribution of obscene material, including electronic video games or recordings, and prohibits importation of obscene material, including electronic video games, into the state.
Penalties for Obscenity in Oklahoma
Generally speaking, and unless extenuating circumstances apply (such as the involvement of a minor), an obscene act such as indecent exposure is considered a misdemeanor offense in Oklahoma, punishable by up to one year in prison. Obscene conduct in the presence of a child, however, is a much more serious offense which carries more significant penalties. A misdemeanor obscenity offense can also be charged to a person who helps the defendant expose himself or takes part in any act or behavior that is offensive or indecent. In many cases, individuals convicted of obscene behavior in Oklahoma will also be required to register as sex offenders with the state, which requires them to update their contact information with local law enforcement officials every time they move – information that is then made available to the public. Sex offender registration is a requirement that can last up to ten years or for the rest of a convicted sex offender’s life.
An Oklahoma Criminal Defense Attorney Can Help
An obscenity conviction in Oklahoma can have a significant impact on your future, possibly forcing you to carry the stigma of a registered sex offender for years or even for life. If you are facing charges for an obscenity crime in Oklahoma, having a qualified defense attorney on your side can significantly improve your chances of winning your case. Our criminal defense lawyers at Oklahoma Legal Center are familiar with Oklahoma sex crime laws, and have experience handling obscenity defense. We can help you protect your rights and fight your obscenity charges.