Defense For The Accused | Indecency With A Child
The offense of Indecency with a Child is covered under Chapter 21 of the Texas Penal Code and prohibits, among other things, sexual contact and conduct with minors. If you have been charged or arrested for this offense in Fort Bend County, you will need to consult an experienced criminal defense attorney who knows how to defend against allegations such as these.
What follows is a summary of what constitutes this offense under Texas law.
Definitions [Texas Penal Code 21.11]:
Sec. 21.11. INDECENCY WITH A CHILD. (a) A person commits an offense if, with a child younger than 17 years of age, whether the child is of the same or opposite sex and regardless of whether the person knows the age of the child at the time of the offense, the person:
- (1) engages in sexual contact with the child or causes the child to engage in sexual contact; or
- (2) with intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person:
- (A) exposes the person’s anus or any part of the person’s genitals, knowing the child is present; or
- (B) causes the child to expose the child’s anus or any part of the child’s genitals.
- (b) It is an affirmative defense to prosecution under this section that the actor:
- (1) was not more than three years older than the victim and of the opposite sex;
- (2) did not use duress, force, or a threat against the victim at the time of the offense; and
- (3) at the time of the offense:
- (A) was not required under Chapter 62, Code of Criminal Procedure, to register for life as a sex offender; or
- (B) was not a person who under Chapter 62 had a reportable conviction or adjudication for an offense under this section.
- (b-1) It is an affirmative defense to prosecution under this section that the actor was the spouse of the child at the time of the offense.
- (c) In this section, “sexual contact” means the following acts, if committed with the intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person:
- (1) any touching by a person, including touching through clothing, of the anus, breast, or any part of the genitals of a child; or
- (2) any touching of any part of the body of a child, including touching through clothing, with the anus, breast, or any part of the genitals of a person.
- (d) An offense under Subsection (a)(1) is a felony of the second degree and an offense under Subsection (a)(2) is a felony of the third degree.
Texas Statutes (source)
Terms As Defined Under These Charges
The term ‘sexual contact’ refers to any touching of the anus, breast, buttocks, genitalia, or pubic area of another person with the intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person. The touching can be over clothes.
If convicted of indecency with a child under Section 21.11(a)(1), you will be facing a second-degree felony punishable by 2-20 years incarceration and up to a $10,000 fine. This offense will also require you to register as a sex offender for life.