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Public Indecency On Your Own Property

By Amy E. Feldman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Can you be arrested for public indecency if you're on your own property?

A 69-year-old Shrewsbury, Massachusetts man was arrested this month for doing yard work. In the nude. One might be worried about getting one's private parts near moving mechanical parts, but not this gentleman who was, not surprisingly, drunk and belligerent at the time the police, tipped off by the people slowing down street traffic to take his picture, arrested him.

While appearing naked in public sounds to some like last night's bad dream, other people who sunbathe nude in their yards may wonder: how can it be public indecency if you're on your own property?

The answer is that while state laws vary, in most states to be guilty of exposure, lewdness, or other crimes that involve being viewed in the nude, the location need only be visible to the public.

So, even if you are on your own property, you can still be arrested if others can see you.

Next time you want to sunbathe, do your yard work, or simply walk around commando style, make sure you're behind your own fence, or better yet, protect your assets and cover up at least the parts that don't really need sun exposure.

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