Alejandro Lazo, 61, was arrested at Sherman Oaks Hospital on Sunday for investigation of a state Health and Safety Code violation, a felony.
Lazo, who lives in suburban Reseda, was released after posting $20,000 bail, and he must appear in court on Feb. 11. There is no attorney of record and no telephone listing for Lazo.
Someone at the San Fernando Valley hospital reported seeing Lazo engaged in a sex act with the body, Officer Bruce Borihanh said.
Investigators haven't disclosed whether the body was that of a man or a woman, Borihanh said.
A voicemail message left with Van Nuys Division detectives wasn't immediately returned.
The hospital wouldn't provide any details about the incident or the nurse.
"We're deferring all comment to the LAPD," said hospital spokesman Ed Barrera.
Anyone who commits an act of sexual penetration on, or has sexual contact with, human remains without lawful authority is guilty of a felony, according to the California Health and Safety Code.
"Sexual contact means any willful touching by a person of an intimate part of a dead human body for the purpose of sexual arousal, gratification, or abuse," the code states.