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3 important things to know about sexting

On Behalf of | Dec 10, 2023 | Sexual Offenses

Sexting, while often viewed as a private and consensual act, can become a criminal offense under certain circumstances. In today’s digital age, it’s crucial to understand the legal boundaries of sexting, especially for those who might find themselves inadvertently crossing into illegal territory.

This understanding is essential for defendants or those seeking clarity on the law. Consider these points about sexting to gain a better understanding of where the legal lines are drawn.

Age of the participants

The legality of sexting largely hinges on the age of the individuals involved. It’s illegal to send, receive or possess sexually explicit images of minors under the age of 18. This holds true even if the person sending or possessing the images is also a minor. Sexting involving minors, regardless of consent, is a criminal act.

Non-consensual sharing

Sexting becomes a criminal offense when images are shared without the consent of the person depicted. This act includes revenge porn, which typically involves sharing intimate images of an ex without their consent. This is a serious violation of privacy and personal rights. Individuals who engage in this behavior can face criminal charges and significant legal penalties.

Harassment or coercion

The context in which sexting occurs can also determine its legality. If it involves harassment, coercion or intimidation, it becomes a criminal matter. This includes situations where someone is coerced into sending explicit images or receives unsolicited sexual images in a harassing manner.

Criminal charges involving sexting are very serious matters. Anyone who’s been charged with this crime should ensure they learn about their defense strategy options so they can choose the best one for them. Having experienced legal guidance is key.