Colorado Sex Crime Attorney Blog

Public Indecency for Spitting? A Westminster, Colorado Law

Posted by Kyle B. Sawyer | Sep 08, 2014 | 0 Comments

Did you know you can be charged with Public Indecency in Westminster, Colorado for spitting? Read more in our blog.
When you hear someone was convicted of Public Indecency, what do you think? Most people think of someone who exposes their genitals or flashes the public in Denver, Adams, or Douglas County. Most people think of Public Indecency as a disgusting, repugnant, lewd act – something our children should never witness. Most people wouldn't want a person convicted of this crime near their kids, or working for them. Think again. Let's look at a city ordinance that shows just how ridiculous these charges can sometimes be.

Another Absurd Law in the City of Westminster: Spitting

A few weeks ago, we wrote about absurd laws throughout Colorado. Well, we just found another one. In the City of Westminster, a person can be charged with Public Indecency – 6-4-1, W.M.C. The law includes:

“An excretory function, including urination, defecation or expectoration.”

Let's think about this for a minute. Expectoration means the act of ejecting or expelling matter, such as “phlegm, from the throat or lungs by coughing or hawking and spitting.” Hmm. This doesn't seem like an act of Public Indecency, especially when you consider it is charged along with urinating in public, or mooning a passing car. Everyone spits, coughs, and clears their throats in public places. It is a healthy thing to do. Not everyone flashes strangers. The city ordinance isn't much different from the State law in Colorado for Public Indecency – C.R.S. 18-7-301.

[pullquote align=”center” textalign=”center” width=”80%”]Why does this law even exist?[/pullquote]

Why Would Westminster Have this Law?

The next logical question would be to ask why Westminster even has such a law. That's where our experience and perspective as criminal defense lawyers comes in. We have worked in municipal courts all across Arapahoe, El Paso, and Jefferson County. Sometimes, the governments in small cities get so caught up in their own little worlds, they forget about common sense. We need leaders in our government who listen to their citizens when they are outraged by absurd laws. The Westminster City Council, Westminster Police Department, and Westminster City Attorney all need to take a long, hard look at this law and move spitting into a different classification of crime.

Charged for Public Indecency in Westminster? Contact a Lawyer

What happens if a young person spits in a public park and is convicted of Public Indecency? According to state law, two convictions of the State Law of Public Indecency result in being labeled as a sex offender. While this isn't true for the city ordinance, it's a bit too close for comfort. This young person would have a difficult time starting their career with a conviction like this on their record. Finding housing and employment with a Public Indecency conviction can be difficult. This is why fighting ridiculous charges is important. If you have been charged under this city law, you might be tempted just to plead guilty in order to avoid jail time or fines. After all, it's such a stupid law anyway. But, a conviction can have lasting effects on your future. Don't give up – contact a skilled criminal defense lawyer to help you fight the absurd charges against you and protect your future.

Request a Free Consultation

If you or a loved one has been charged with Public Indecency, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the O'Malley Law Office for a free consultation at 303-830-0880. Together, we can protect your future.

 Image courtesy of artur84 at

About the Author

Kyle B. Sawyer

I have a passion for defending others in criminal cases. I am able to empathize with my clients and understand their emotions and fears. I have a unique perspective on the criminal justice system and I understand what it feels like to be wrongly accused of a crime.


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