Privacy and private parts: Nude neighbor exposes law's limit

AP News
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Posted: Mar 24, 2015 5:18 PM

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — A Charlotte man who has continually irritated his neighbors by standing naked in the front door of his home has exposed a state law that local prosecutors want to change.

North Carolina law says a person can't expose himself in a place where the public has access. But CMPD spokesman Rob Tufano told The Charlotte Observer (http://bit.ly/1BhqTzq) that police want to change that, making it clear that it's unlawful for a person to expose himself if he can be seen from a public place.

Capt. Rod Golding said he had met with the district attorney's office and that there might be a way to prosecute Gerard Leeper under existing law. Golding said officers have also talked with Leeper's family members about getting counseling for him.

Neighbors in the north Charlotte neighborhood where Leeper lives released some of their frustrations at a homeowners meeting at a neighborhood church Monday night. Police officers attended the meeting.

Leeper didn't speak at the meeting but told reporters before attending that it's his neighbors who are the problem, and he blamed them for conducting a witch hunt.

"I will not stand outside my door naked," Leeper said. "And no one has a picture of me standing outside my door naked. What they have is a picture of intrusion of seclusion."

As for standing at his door without clothes, Leeper said he is not a threat to the neighborhood. He said the world needs to understand serenity and being reasonable. He didn't elaborate.

"We have to be mindful of when our kids go outside," Xavier Hodges, the homeowner's association president, told reporters after the meeting. "Sometimes you might have people who want to take matters into their own hands. As a community we don't want that."

Leeper's private parts have been on the public record before. Officers have arrested Leeper at his home three times on indecent exposure charges, and a spokeswoman for the Mecklenburg District Attorney's Office said Leeper was convicted and sentenced to 10 days in jail in 2006 for indecent exposure.