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Jump to navigation Skip navigation. A year-old Minnesota girl is fighting criminal charges that have the potential to destroy her future, including her ability to obtain housing, to enroll in college programs, and even to pursue some career paths. Her case does not involve harm to others. It does not involve damage to property. And it does not have anything to do with illegal substances. Rather her young life could be ruined all because she sent an explicit Snapchat of herself to a boy she liked. In the case, Jane Doe used the phone-based application Snapchat to send a revealing selfie to a boy at her school in Southern Minnesota. A conviction, or even a guilty plea to a lesser charge, would require Jane to spend 10 years on the sex offender registry. Sending sexually suggestive text messages and explicit photos or videos of oneself has become so commonplace that it has a name — sexting. Conservative estimates on the prevalence of adolescent sexting are that 12 percent of adolescents aged have sent an explicit image of themselves to another person at some point in their life.
Sex Crime Defense
Information on what these terms mean, tips for where to turn, and links to the best resources for further information. The practice is not illegal when photos are shared between consenting adults, but when minors are involved, sexual-exploitation and child-pornography laws can come into play, so great care is needed in the handling of sexting cases involving people under However, although there have been some highly publicized cases, prosecution of minors for distribution of sexting photos has been relatively rare in the U. When someone uses pressure or coercion to get nude or sexually explicit photos from another person. This kind of sexting can start out consensual but go very wrong — and harmful.
Raymond Arthur does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment. Young people have always explored their sexuality and shared these experiences with others. A lot of these young people will then go on to share these images with someone they know. These figures, suggest that sharing self-generated sexual images has become just another way for young people to express their sexual selves. But, for some young people, sexting can lead to criminal prosecution along with classification as a sex offender. It counts as an offence of distributing an indecent image of a child and meets the legal definition of child pornography. And this year alone, across the UK the police have investigated thousands of children for sexting including a five-year-old boy in County Durham, and a year-old boy who was cautioned by Northumbria Police.