Loiter with intent to commit prostitution
Information on the crime of loiter with intent to commit prostitution is found at California penal code section 653.22(a).
PC 653.22(a) Law (Abbr.)
PC 653.22(a)(1) Except as specified in paragraph (2), it is unlawful for any person to loiter in any public place with the intent to commit prostitution. This intent is evidenced by acting in a manner and under circumstances that openly demonstrate the purpose of inducing, enticing, or soliciting prostitution, or procuring another to commit prostitution.
PC 653.22(a)(2) Notwithstanding paragraph (1), this subdivision does not apply to a child under 18 years of age who is alleged to have engaged in conduct that would, if committed by an adult, violate this subdivision. A commercially exploited child under this paragraph may be adjudged a dependent child of the court pursuant to paragraph (2) of subdivision (b) of Section 300 of the Welfare and Institutions Code and may be taken into temporary custody pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 305 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, if the conditions allowing temporary custody without warrant are met.
PC 653.22(b) Among the circumstances that may be considered in determining whether a person loiters with the intent to commit prostitution are that the person:
PC 653.22(b)(1) Repeatedly beckons to, stops, engages in conversations with, or attempts to stop or engage in conversations with passersby, indicative of soliciting for prostitution.
PC 653.22(b)(2) Repeatedly stops or attempts to stop motor vehicles by hailing the drivers, waving arms, or making any other bodily gestures, or engages or attempts to engage the drivers or passengers of the motor vehicles in conversation, indicative of soliciting for prostitution.
PC 653.22(b)(3) Has been convicted of violating this section, subdivision (a) or (b) of Section 647, or any other offense relating to or involving prostitution, within five years of the arrest under this section.
(4) Circles an area in a motor vehicle and repeatedly beckons to, contacts, or attempts to contact or stop pedestrians or other motorists, indicative of soliciting for prostitution.
(5) Has engaged, within six months prior to the arrest under this section, in any behavior described in this subdivision, with the exception of paragraph (3), or in any other behavior indicative of prostitution activity.
(c) The list of circumstances set forth in subdivision (b) is not exclusive. The circumstances set forth in subdivision (b) should be considered particularly salient if they occur in an area that is known for prostitution activity. Any other relevant circumstances may be considered in determining whether a person has the requisite intent. Moreover, no one circumstance or combination of circumstances is in itself determinative of intent. Intent must be determined based on an evaluation of the particular circumstances of each case.
To be found guilty of PC 653.22(a) the district attorney must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant specifically loitered in an area with the specific intent to engage in the crime of prostitution.
Both the prostitute, and/or the person seeking prostitution services, may be charged with the crime of loitering with intent to commit prostitution under PC 647.22(a). If an agreement, or solicitation, for sexual services in exchange for compensation is made, the defendant will be charged with the crime of prostitution and not just loitering to commit prostitution, which is a lesser crime than the crime of prostitution (PC 653.22(a) & 647(b)).
PC 653.22(a) Sentence & Punishment
Probation Sentence: A probation sentence is a period of supervision as opposed to an actual jail sentence. A probation sentence carries conditions of probation, or terms of probation, that must be followed by the probationer in order to avoid further punishment, including an actual jail sentence. A probation sentence for a PC 653.22(a)) crime is called informal probation, which means that the defendant is not monitored or supervised by a probation officer during the probationary period. Probation setences are available in loitering with intent to commit prostitution cases, but they are not guaranteed. Whether or not a defendant is granted a probation sentence after a PC 653.22(a) conviction depends largely on the facts of the case and the defendant's criminal history.
Note: It is possible to be ordered to serve a jail sentence as a term of probation, as opposed to being ordered to a jail sentence without a grant of probation. However, when a jail sentence is ordered as a term of probation the jail term is usually much shorter than the maximum jail sentence otherwise associated with the crime and the defendant may usually serve his or her jail sentence on work release or house arrest.
Sex Offender Registration: If found guilty of loitering with intent to commit prostitution (PC 653.22(a)), the defendant will not ordinarily be required to register as a sex offender.
Caution: The judge may order the defendant to register as a sex offender in any prostitution case. This is a very unusual order in a PC 653.22(a) case but the law does exist to give the judge the power to make such an order (See PC 290.006).
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