Should Teenagers Who Sext Each Other Face Criminal Charges?

How should law enforcement handle sexting cases between teenagers?

By Brian Slupski

As if parenting isn't full of enough worries, evolving technology means parents now have to worry about one more thing — sexting.

It also often falls under the child pornography laws of states.

In Walpole, Mass., police are conducting a sexting investigation involving at least 10 students after a parent found inappropriate images on a cell phone and contacted authorities.

Technically, a nude photo taken by an underage teenager and sent to another underage teenager could result in felony child pornography charges. Walpole police said they do not plan on charging anyone because there was no criminal intent and the laws have not kept pace with the technology.

In 2012 in Smyrna, Georgia, a high school student was charged with a misdemeanor after sending photos of himself to three female classmates.

Pennsylvania passed a law specifically criminalizing sexting between teenagers. It is illegal for someone younger than 18 to take a nude photo of his or her self and send it to someone and it is illegal for someone underage to possess a nude photo of a person between 12 and 17.

How should law enforcement handle sexting between underage teenagers? Tell us what you think in the comment section.


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