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Criminal Court considered whether to dismiss indecent exposure charges. People v. Orimogunje, 35 Misc. 3d 639 (N.Y. Crim. Ct. 2012)


Indecent exposure in New York refers to the act of publicly exposing one’s private parts in a manner considered offensive or inappropriate. This offense is addressed under New York Penal Law Section 245.01.

Under this statute, a person commits indecent exposure when they intentionally expose their private parts in a public place or in a manner that could be easily observed by others who are in a private location. The law specifies that the exposure must be done for the purpose of alarming or offending others, or with the knowledge that such conduct is likely to cause alarm or offense.

Indecent exposure is considered a violation in New York, which is a less serious offense compared to misdemeanors or felonies. However, it can still result in legal consequences such as fines or community service.

The statute does not specify which body parts constitute private parts, but generally, it includes genitals, buttocks, and female breasts. The law also does not define what constitutes a public place, but it typically refers to locations accessible to the general public, such as streets, parks, or public transportation.

In cases of indecent exposure, the prosecution must prove that the defendant knowingly and intentionally exposed their private parts in a public place or in a manner visible to others. Intent is a key element in establishing guilt under this statute, as the act must be done with the purpose of causing alarm or offense.

Background Facts
The incident occurred on September 20, 2011, when a civilian witness noticed Lawrence Orimogunje sitting on a public bus with his legs open, exposing his penis. The witness reported the incident to a New York City Police Officer, who then arrested Orimogunje. Orimogunje was subsequently charged with violating N.Y. Penal Law ยง 245.01, Exposure of a Person– otherwise known as indecent exposure, a sex crime.

The primary issue before the court is whether the accusatory instrument against Orimogunje is facially sufficient, warranting dismissal of the charges.

“Sufficiency of the accusatory instrument” refers to whether the document provides enough details and allegations to support the charges and give the defendant fair notice of what they are accused of. If the accusatory instrument is found to be insufficient, it may result in the dismissal of the case or the need for the prosecution to amend the document to meet the legal standards.

The court denied Orimogunje’s motion to dismiss the accusatory instrument, finding it facially sufficient. However, it granted a hearing to determine the admissibility of statements and identification evidence. The court also allowed the defendant to make additional motions based on information disclosed during the proceedings.


The court considered the legal standards for facial sufficiency of accusatory instruments, emphasizing the need for non-hearsay allegations supporting each element of the charged offense. Orimogunje argued that the complaint failed to address potential exceptions to the exposure law, relying on legal precedent. However, the court found the complaint adequate, denying the motion to dismiss.

Regarding suppression motions, the court granted a hearing to assess the voluntariness of statements and the admissibility of identification evidence. The defendant raised concerns about Miranda rights violations and suggestive identification procedures, prompting the court to further examine these issues.

The defendant’s request to reserve the right to make additional motions was partially granted, allowing for future motions based on newly disclosed information. However, the court denied the request for an immediate adjournment and transcript review, deeming it premature.

The court’s decision on the sufficiency of the accusatory instrument and suppression motions sets the stage for Orimogunje’s trial. While the charges stand for now, the hearings will provide opportunities to challenge the admissibility of evidence crucial to the case. Orimogunje’s request to reserve the right to make additional motions reflects the ongoing nature of the legal proceedings, with further developments expected as the trial progresses.

Note that if you face a sex crime charge, even if it’s a violation, contact an experienced New York sex crime lawyer. Even if it’s a minor offense, the result can impact various aspects of life, including your employment, your finances, and your family relationships.

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