Police arrested a Columbia, Missouri man Monday on suspicion of sexual misconduct. Authorities claim that a witness saw the Columbia man expose himself in a Hobby Lobby store on November 23. The witness reportedly contacted staff at the store about the alleged incident. Police claim that the man seen in an aisle fondling himself later ran out of the store, and fled in a car. Officers say that they were able to link the car seen leaving the store to the Columbia man.

Authorities used some kind of photo lineup during an investigation into the allegations. Police claim that the witness picked the Columbia man from the photo display. Law enforcement took the man into custody this week on suspicion of second-degree sexual misconduct. He was booked into jail before being released on $500 bond.

Many people know that a person is innocent until proven guilty under our system of justice. But, people who are accused of any type of sexual offense may see that public perception seems to treat sex crimes differently.

There are a wide variety of allegations that can fall within the area of a sex offense.

Allegations of exposure of one’s private parts are but one set of circumstances that can lead to criminal charges. In general, allegations may involve a misunderstanding in some cases—in others, issues may be involved that call the facts and/or the police investigation into question. With the potential stigma that can attach to such an offense if a conviction is entered, it is important for anyone accused of sexual misconduct to consider seeking the advice and assistance of a criminal defense lawyer to help protect rights.

Source: Columbia Tribune, “Man arrested after touching self at store,” Dec. 3, 2013