Two accused of ‘open and gross lewdness’ appear in district court

Westfield District Court
file photo (WWLP)

WESTFIELD, Mass. (The Westfield News) – Westfield District Court has seen two cases this month involving charges of open and gross lewdness.

“Open and gross lewdness” is listed under Massachusetts General Law Chapter 272 Section 16, as a “man or woman, married or unmarried, who is guilty of open and gross lewdness and lascivious behavior,” according to malegislature.gov.

“Lascivious” is defined as lewd or lustful, according to the Merriam-Webster app

On Monday, Jeffrey J. Sprague, 54, of Westfield, was released on $1,000 personal surety after being arraigned on charges of indecent exposure and three counts of open and gross lewdness.

On August 10, Eddie Camacho, 28, of Westfield, was given an 18-month suspended sentence after pleading guilty to open and gross lewdness and disorderly conduct.

Eddie Camacho (Photo from The Westfield News)
Eddie Camacho (Photo from The Westfield News)

Camacho’s open and gross lewdness took place in the Dunkin’ Donuts located at 127 N. Elm Street on April 20. Westfield Police Capt. Hipolito Nunez said that on two occasions on April 20 Camacho exposed his genitalia to female patrons.

Around 8:30 a.m., Camacho was reportedly partially hidden in a corner when he exposed himself and proceeded to masturbate, Nunez said. He was ordered to leave by someone in the establishment. Camacho returned around 12:30 p.m. on April 20 and this time police were called after he repeated his behavior in front of a woman patron who was with her young daughter, Nunez said.

The mother told police, “There is a creepy-looking guy touching himself while staring at us,” according to Nunez.

When the Dunkin’ Donuts owner was questioned about the incidents, he said he didn’t want to comment, but added that there have been no other similar problems since April.


Jeffrey Sprague (Photo from The Westfield News)
Jeffrey Sprague (Photo from The Westfield News)

Sprague allegedly exposed himself to a mother and her young children after using the ATM at Westfield Bank located at 26 Arnold Street on June 1 at approximately 5:30 p.m.

After he finished his transaction, allegedly he turned around and the woman noticed that the defendant “had his zipper undone, was not wearing any underwear and that he had his (genitalia) pulled through the open zipper in plain view of her and her children,” according to court records.

Sprague was identified using the ATM’s video footage/images, by departmental photos of him and Massachusetts RMV photographs.

The Commonwealth authorized the expenditure of $500 for Sprague to use to obtain the services of an expert/investigator to examine the evidence.

Mass General Law Chapter 261, Section 27A allows for people who are considered “indigent” to petition the Commonwealth for funds needed to prosecute or defend their case.

For a person to be found guilty of open and gross lewdness, the prosecution must prove five things beyond a reasonable doubt, according to mass.gov; that the defendant:

  1. 1) exposed genitals, buttocks or female breasts;
  2. did so intentionally;
  3. did so “openly,” meaning he/she intended public exposure;
  4. did so to produce alarm or shock; and
  5. caused one or more persons to be alarmed or shocked.

“Exhibitionistic disorder is a mental health condition that centers on a need to expose one’s genitals to other people (typically strangers caught off guard) in order to gain sexual satisfaction,” according to the Hypersexual Disorders website.

Nunez explained that if Comacho is charged with any crime, related or unrelated, during his probation period, then he would be sent to jail to serve the 18-month suspended sentence.

Sprague is due back in court for a pretrial hearing on October 29.

Staff Writer Christine Charnosky can be reached at christinec@thewestfieldnewsgroup.com

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