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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk
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    05.22.17 @ 07:13 PM
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    Default 17-yo boy faces 40 yrs in prison for consensual sex, sexting with 15-yo girlfriend

    So, it's become clear over the last several years that sexting laws have not caught up with teenagers. It's normal to be sexually curious, it's normal for teens to have sex with other teens, but unfortunately the law isn't always on their side, often times resulting in a life of registering as a sex offender. Most states have a Romeo and Juliet law. That is, sexual relationships are permitted amongst teens as long as the perpetrator is no more than 4 years older than the other. Wisconsin does not. In this particular case, the boy on trial, Austin, is 17, the girlfriend 15, which would normally fall within this exception.

    Austin and "Kim" (not her real name) were together for a year, attending the same high school. They were sexually active within their committed relationship, and the parents were aware, providing condoms and birth control. They were also sexting, as teens do. But things went awry. Kim cheated on Austin by sexting with another boy, "Thomas." Despite using Snapchat to do it, Thomas grabbed screenshots of the explicit pictures and began spreading them around school. Austin found out and demanded to see the pictures if they were true. They were, and Austin's mom found out. His mom notified Kim's parents, who notified the school. The school has an officer on campus, and thus the issue did not stay a school issue, but became a legal one.

    Officer Johnson asked to see the cell phones in question. Johnson acquired the phones of several boys whom Thomas had shared the photos. Then he talked to Kim. Kim told the officer she was scared that Austin was in trouble--he hadn't wronged her, Thomas did, and she liked him. They were sleeping together as boyfriend-girlfriend, she confided in him, and she had sent him photos/videos. Another big mistake. According to Austin, Officer Johnson told him he was just going to delete the photos/videos, but needed him to sign a waiver in order to do it, so Austin signed it. Big mistake.

    Austin and Kim skipped school together and were caught in the basement of the building he and his family live in. Police were called. And whether the police did some convincing or Kim's parents were fed up, a restraining order was filed against Austin for possible charges. Once forensics were done with the phones, the hammer of justice fell--on Austin alone. Thomas, all the boys he shared the photos with, and Kim, well, they decided not to prosecute them for child pornography.

    Austin is 17. In a weird wrinkle of law in Wisconsin, 17-year olds can be prosecuted as adults. So Austin is bearing charged with sexual exploitation, sexual assault of a child under the age of 16, and possession of child pornography. This carries a maximum sentence of 40 years. (Link)

  2. #2
    Atomic Punk rocknblues81's Avatar
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    05.23.17 @ 02:04 AM
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    Our society is fucked up in so many ways.
    Michael Caine on Jaws: The Revenge:

    "I have never seen it, but by all accounts it is terrible. However, I have seen the house that it built and it is terrific."

    Samuel Johnson 1775 : “Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel”

    "McDonalds is The Antichrist" - Bill Hicks

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jSH6ofHbeUw

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  4. #3
    THBBFT! Number 47's Avatar
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    Atomic Punk
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    05.22.17 @ 07:13 PM
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    Default

    If someone wants to combine these threads, do so. I consider myself to be reasonably intelligent, but I can't get the search engine on this site to help me. Usually when I find an old thread, I google search "Vhlinks ________." I just didn't think to do it this time.

    However, there are many more examples than just this case, as the other thread implies. The problem here so much isn't the sexting, but that the sexting led the boy in question to trust the police and believe his lie about what giving him the phone meant, which led to being charged as an adult for something just shy of rape.

  6. #5
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
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    05.23.17 @ 02:39 AM
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    When those in charge of prosecuting and judging are morons, well then we're in trouble.

  7. #6
    Atomic Punk
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    05.22.17 @ 07:13 PM
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    The authorities say that the laws, as written, are necessary to protect children, and since kids shouldn't be sexting anyway, the laws don't need to be changed. At the end of the day, a DA gets to say he had X amount of convictions for child pornography, and no one distinguishes which ones were actual predators and which ones were like this. It's a feather in the cap.

    Considering the FBI is one of the major distributors of child pornography, I'm not sure things will change any time soon. The reason we punish possession of child pornography is that children are victimized every time it is viewed. So in order to catch people for said victimization, the FBI had to victimize children thousands of times. At the end of the day, though, most people don't know about it, they just get to hear about the FBI catching hundreds of child predators.

  8. #7
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
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    05.23.17 @ 02:39 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by lovemachine97(Version 2) View Post
    The authorities say that the laws, as written, are necessary to protect children, and since kids shouldn't be sexting anyway, the laws don't need to be changed. At the end of the day, a DA gets to say he had X amount of convictions for child pornography, and no one distinguishes which ones were actual predators and which ones were like this. It's a feather in the cap.

    Considering the FBI is one of the major distributors of child pornography, I'm not sure things will change any time soon. The reason we punish possession of child pornography is that children are victimized every time it is viewed. So in order to catch people for said victimization, the FBI had to victimize children thousands of times. At the end of the day, though, most people don't know about it, they just get to hear about the FBI catching hundreds of child predators.
    You're not wrong. The laws are needed but we need better judgement from those applying them. No law will be foolproof.

  9. #8
    Eruption TJENZ's Avatar
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    05.22.17 @ 12:18 PM
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    This is completely fucked up.
    Laws aren't keeping up with tech. Now this kid is going to have to pay a price for lazy law makers.

  10. #9
    Sinner's Swing! VH122's Avatar
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    It's just to bad.
    We all had to grow up with these same laws.
    Why should these entitled brats get any special treatment?

  11. #10
    Baluchitherium The Rover's Avatar
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    05.22.17 @ 10:06 PM
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    In most totalitarian states, enough laws are written in such a way as to make everyone guilty of something punishable by lengthy prison terms, or worse. Which then allows anyone to be arrested and prosecuted selectively at will.

    When I hear the term "child porn", to me, the first thing that comes to my mind, is some very sick person filming a 5 year old in some kind of sexual situation.

    Why don't state govts just go to the ultimate control level, and make fornication illegal, except between married persons.

    That would allow a far wider net to be cast.

    Is the law to serve the people, or, are the people here to serve the law?

    ~~8 U.S.C. § 1182(f)~~

  12. #11
    Atomic Punk
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    05.22.17 @ 07:13 PM
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    Well, as I have said before, lawyers argue the average American commits three felonies a day without knowing it. I do try to argue with people that overcriminalizaton is part of the problem we have with the criminal justice system, but it often falls on deaf ears. For a country that gets pissed off that a football player won't stand for the first verse of the national anthem, which ends with the words "the land of the free and the home of the brave," as well as students who won't stand for the pledge of allegiance, which contains the words, "with liberty and justice for all," any time something happens, the reaction is "TOTBAL." There Ought To Be A Law . . .

    People love liberty, but they will, in the same breath, argue something should be illegal, even if there is no victim.

 

 

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