It’s beach season, time to break out the sunscreen, the sunblock, and yes, the swimwear. We’ve been to the beaches, we’ve seen them at the water parks, at the heart of this post is the one, the only, the thong/ g-string bikini! Have a big butt that you don’t want to hide? Here are some things to be aware of before you strut your stuff in Florida:
- Indecent Exposure – It’s a First Degree Misdemeanor in Florida, punishable by up to 1 year in county jail and $1,000.00 fine. Indecent exposure is defined as the exposure of sexual organs in public or another’s private property.
- Intent – Just because you’re naked, doesn’t mean that it’s indecent. You have to be showing off in a way that is meant to be vulgar, indecent, lewd, or lascivious. That’s a good thing or there would be a definite prohibition on nude beaches (which we have!).
- Your butt is not a “sexual organ” according to case law.
So where is the tan line drawn? City and CountyOrdinances are where you might get it in the end. Cities and Counties can impose greater restrictions on certain behavior in their city limits. Those infractions can be a second degree misdemeanor, punishable by up to 60 days in jail and a $500.00 fine. For example, the City of Orlando prohibits individuals from baring their bottoms in commercial (business) locations that serve alcohol. BrevardCounty has an anti-nudity ordinance, but VolusiaCounty does not. Other locations will permit even topless sunbathing, providing that once an individual leaves the beach they will be subject to city ordinances and can be cited.
The bottom line is Beware Before You Bare. Even if it may be legal, some law enforcement agencies will still arrest an individual and let the courts “sort it out later,” and those thongs aren’t always large enough to carry bond money with you!
 G & B of Jacksonville, Inc. v. State, Dept. of Business Regulation, Division of Beverage, App. 1 Dist., 362 So.2d 951 (1978), appeal dismissed 372 So.2d 468.