Is Teen Sexting a Crime?
Sexting is a newer spin on the age-old desire of adults and teenager alike to express themselves sexually. Regardless of potential personal objections, the act of sending, creating, or posting suggestive images or video to various outlets such as cell phones, emails, and internet have various draws for consenting individuals of all ages. Technologically savvy adults over the age of 50 are even getting into the act to “spice up” their marriages. However, for minors, the act is closely related to “child pornography” and as such, the repercussions are severe.
Consensual Child Pornography
As naive as the behavior may be, occasionally young teenagers “in love” have the bright idea to send each other nude photos of each other. While it is certainly frowned upon, with two consenting children of the same age bracket, the behavior should be considered an innocent mistake. Of course, it has been seen time and again when an ex in the relationship still maintains ownership of their copy of their ex and spreads them across school and to various social media outlets, causing further damage. However, even while they are in the relationship, the state of Connecticut says that so long as these individuals are between the ages of 13 and 15, a crime occurred on both the sending and receiving ends.
Both Parties Are At-Fault
Child pornography is any form of visual depiction of sexual conduct involving anyone under the age of 16. While this initially intended to focus on adults seeking out children, the law did not take into full account children sending them to other kids, making them both criminals and sexual offenders. A teenager is considered wrong if they:
- Are aged 13 to 15 and send a photo or video of themselves using an electronic communication device, or
- Are 13 to 17 and are found in possession of such an image.
If teenagers end up convicted of sexting each other, the charges qualify as a Class A misdemeanor, which as an adult is punishable by a prison sentence of up to one year and a $2,000.00 fine. Under certain circumstances, sex offender requirements may be applicable such as registration on the sex offender registry or sex offender probation. However, as juveniles, they are potentially eligible for more behavior rehabilitation penalties, such as a warning, fine, probation, or a stint in the care of Department of Children and Families.
Protect The Future
If your child is in trouble with the law over sexting another student, it is important that you do everything you can to protect their future. With the harshest penalties, future educational and employment opportunities may be delayed. If you are interested in discussing your situation with a Stamford, CT sex crime defense attorney, contact Law Offices of Daniel P. Weiner today at 203-348-5846 to set up your free first consultation.