September 7, 2015

Sexting teen accused of sexually exploiting himself

9-8-15 North Carolina:

How's this for prosecutorial logic run amok: a teenage boy in the US is facing charges for sexting his girlfriend. He's now 17 years old. Under North Carolina law, that makes him an adult, which thereby makes him eligible to face felony charges of sexually exploiting a minor by sexting.

So far, so logical. But let's add some super-duper stupid sauce to this souffle - because he sexted selfies when he was 16, he now stands accused of exploiting himself.

The Fayetteville Observer reports that the boy - who was the quarterback of his high school football team until the charges forced him to resign - has been hit with five charges of sexually exploiting a minor: four for making and possessing two sexually explicit pictures of himself and one for possessing a copy of the picture that his girlfriend took of herself and willingly sent to him.

Because he's considered an adult - in the US, the states of New York and North Carolina consider 16 to be the age of adulthood for criminal purposes - he's looking at a potential prison sentence of up to 10 years.

So far however, the prosecutors sound like they're inclined to iron this out without ridiculously draconian sentencing.

His girlfriend, who willingly sent him explicit pictures about a year ago, was also charged with felonies related to being her own child pornographer. She has already been let off on a plea bargain that included dropping the felony charges against her.

The Cumberland County Sheriff's Office had concluded that she committed two felony sex crimes against herself and arrested her in February.

She was listed on a warrant as both the adult perpetrator and the minor victim of two counts of sexual exploitation of a minor: second-degree exploitation for making her photo and third-degree exploitation for having her photo in her possession.

On 21 July, the girl admitted in court that she was responsible for the crime of disseminating harmful material to minors, which is a misdemeanor and which doesn't require her to register as a sex offender.

District Court Judge Stephen Stokes put the teenage girl on probation for a year. He also ordered her to pay $200 in court costs, to stay in school, to take a class on how to make good decisions, to refrain from using illegal drugs or alcohol, to not possess a mobile phone for the duration of her one-year probation, and to do 30 hours of community service.

If she'd been convicted, she'd have been compelled to register as a sex offender for the rest of her life. Unfortunately, the boy in the case is still facing this prospect.

Keep in mind that when it comes to sexual intercourse, the kids did nothing illegal, if they in fact did have sex.

Sex between consenting 16-year-old teens is legal in North Carolina, and the age dips even younger than that for teens who are less than four years apart in age.

Taking and sending pictures of your genitals, however, is not legal, if you're a minor and/or sending photos to a minor.

How did the cops even know?

According to Sheriff's Office lawyer Ronnie Mitchell, the two teens didn't share their photos with anyone else, for which we shout a hearty hallelujah! ..Continued on Naked Security.. by Lisa Vaas

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