18-year-old Boy labeled "sex offender" over "sexting" incident?
Apparently, this 18-year-old boy was dating a 16-year-old, which is still legal. She sent some nude pictures to his email as a surprise. After an argument, late one night, he got vindictive and sent some of the pictures to the contacts on her email address. The next day, police showed up and confiscated everything digital that he owned and arrested him. He is now labeled a sex offender, and will be 43 before he can approach the courts about repealing the felony charge and title.
IMO, this is ridiculous. He was a jerk, absolutely, but this goes overboard, way above and beyond what he should have been charged with. This "sexting" (taking nude pictures of oneself and using digital media such as phones or email to send the image to others) is out of control, first of all, but to charge someone that I still consider on the edge of childhood as a sex offender over something so very small? I find it absolutely ridiculous. Obviously he was an adult and should be punished legally for doing something he had no business doing, morally or legally, but to carry the felony title of sex offender for more than 20 years? I can't even fathom how this is proportional to the crime. He also has to attended mandatory therapy once a week, discussing such issues as "why rape is wrong" and "what sexual abuse does to the victim". This seems WRONG to me, and everyone here knows that I have no tolerance for sexual predators...but I don't see this guy as being THAT bad.
I agree, to ruin this kids life is wrong. I hope they appeal it. Yes, he should be punished, and as far as I'm concerned the girl should be at least grounded for a long time, but this will distroy this guys future, for sure.
If it were my son, the girls father would get first dibs, then I get whats left of em! With that said, to label an 18 year old a sex offender is a bit over the top. I think they should have degree felonies. This 18 year old is now lumped in with those that rape 5 year olds, and that is not right. I am not suggesting he should get off by any means, but this is over the top. It will keep him from getting jobs, it will keep him from living within a certain distance from where children play and go to school, he will be restricted from being around children, and probably be denied military service as a result. For a teenage prank, it is over the top. If it were my daughter I would be upset that she was allowing herself to be photographed nude and wonder what in the world she was up to as well. But I would beat the snot out of the boy and yes he should have to go to court, probation till hes 21 with suspended jail time maybe, but enforced if he gets into trouble with the law again are much more suited to the offense.
To further elaborate,
We can go into the sexual predator site, put in our address and it brings up ALL sexual predators who live in or around the address I put in. It does not always elaborate on why they are labeled as such. So in other words, a 50 year old man that was convicted of rape, rape on a child, exposing himself, or a kid in a relationship under the age of 18 are all lumped together. This is wrong to me. I want to know if someone in my neighborhood is a risk to my grandchildren not if a 19 year old was involved with a 15 year old. It leaves a ? as to just how bad they are and if we the community should panic.
I still think it is ridiculous to ruin the life of an 18 year old boy with no warning, period. I remember when I was 18, and I was not exactly functioning with the knowledge of an adult. Now, I know you think it is as it should be, but I do not agree.
Judges can give different punishments for the same crime, it happens all the time. Based on the info we have, it does sound much to harsh. But perhaps there is other info and history on this guy that we do not know about.
I think the punishment might a "tad" harsh, but on the other hand -- the law is the law and that's part of what's wrong in our society today --- to many people think the law applies to all, unless it's too harsh, then it doesn't apply to themselves or their children, grandchildren, etc. There's no way that the law can be "bent" to accommodate everyone.
Just think -- if this 18 yr old sent pics of a 16 yr old -- maybe he'd do the same with a 10 yr old if he got angry with her?? Who knows?? Maybe he wouldn't, but he shouldn't have been vindictive with the girl either........
I agree with Rory -- if he's old enough to have the cell phone, he needs to be responsible enough to use it correctly (or legally, in this case) and if he doesn't use it correctly, he should be prepared to suffer the consequences.......
We all have to take responsibility for our actions and I've always been told that ignorance of the law is no excuse for breaking it.
No, I'm not a hard @ss -- I just believe that people need to consider consequences BEFORE they act, not wait till it's over then say "gee, I didn't know I couldn't do that". If good things come from your actions, you've probably done okay, but if bad things happen because of it, you need to learn the lesson and if others SEE what happened to you, maybe they won't make your mistakes. I was taught this at a very young age and even as I'm about to hit the "post comment" button, I know there will be consequences.........
It's NOT easier to get forgiveness than it is to get permission.........
That said -- how did he get her contact list?? If I send someone an e-mail, they can't get my contact list unless I've sent the same e-mail to everyone on it, in which case they wouldn't need to send it to anyone because *I* already did....OR they've "hacked" into my computer..... naughty naughty......so then I'd have to ask if he were actually using HER phone (or computer, whichever it was) to send these pics. Maybe that could change things a bit??
Well, there you go -- how naive can I get?? Yeah, I did know the CC "thingy" and I also know the BCC "thingy" - that one scares me a bit...... lol Not meaning to sound like a smart aleck by any means-------- See the thing is - yes, I knew this, but *I* don't normally send out group e-mails, as I'm pretty selective in who I send things to (you know -- this one doesn't want jokey things, that one doesn't want the religious stuff, another doesn't like the "Obama bashes", someone else can't handle the "Bush bashes" -- yeah, you got the idea), so I just didn't think of that. Shame on me.. I've just learned to be more careful.
A friend of mines son, age 18 at the time, got to talking over the internet with a gal from florida. She passed herself off as being much older than the 15 years she was. This boy was mentally immature anyway, a geek at school, loner. He and this girl got serious and she decided to come to Ohio to be with him. The parents put out an alert on the girl, she was found in his company and he was arrested and listed as a sex offender. He could not find a job, had to report to a probation officeer and the whole nine yards. After the girl reached 18, she and this boy got married. They are still married and he is still listed as a sexual predator and continues to have problems with keeping a job. The really good one was within 3 miles of a school, therefore he could not take it. In order to get this expunged he must get a lawyer, pay thousands of dollars to take it before the court, and even then, not sure he can get it done. Now, Im sorry, that is not right. You can not lump everyone into a situation with someone who molests boys and sends nude pics of small children over the internet. These situations do need handled for sure and a penalty should be paid, but to ruin someones life in some of these situations is silly. Even murder has degrees and different penalties to fit the crime. First Degree, Second Degree, you get my point.
Sure, I agree Rory. However, if the law says he can have sex with a 16-year-old, then can you really expect him to think differently about sending nude photos of her out? I agree that it was wrong, of course, she was a minor, but if they can have sex...It's such a fuzzy area. Perhaps, if you say, we should clearly define the age with no exceptions, we should prosecute for sex between 18/16-year-olds despite the age of consent.
Barb::::: she gave him her email address, and every single contact that he sent the pictures to was under 18.
I agree that people should be punished for the crimes they commit, but...the punishment should fit the crime. An 18-year-old who gets figuratively kicked in the teeth by his girlfriend commits a petty and admittedly WRONG act in revenge, and he will pay for it for more than 20 years. A child molester sexually molests an 8-year-old but because she wasn't violated the crime isn't considered a "violent attack" and he gets 6 years in jail, 10 years probation, and gets put on the same list as the 18-year-old did. Yes the offender list will give loose details to the crimes, but the minute your name pops up on that list, that's it you're done..no one's going to look for the details.
This is screwed up. The law needs to catch up to today's society..the internet has opened a whole new opportunity for criminal intent and criminal acts, and the law system has NOT caught up to it. "Equity" may have worked for generations in other countries, but the world is changing and the system needs to get broader. There are so many crimes committed through digital media settings that have absolutely no legal precedence in the sense of prosecution, and not only does it result in many cases of unequal crime/punishment, but it creates loopholes for creeps and perverts to slip through.
If this had been MY daughter, she would be grounded until she was 30, and her brother would have beaten the kid that did it bloody, but would I have prosecuted and pushed the case until he was registered as a sex offender? No. If I allowed my daughter when she turns 16 to date an 18-year-old, I couldn't turn around and suddenly claim that he was molesting a minor. That's entrapment in a vague sense (sure you can date my daughter....you hurt her feelings? You child molester!!!), and wrong on so many levels. Like a woman who claims rape because she regrets having sex with a guy after the fact and wants to get off the hook.
I know, but what I'm saying is that the law needs to expand its base. being able to change the severity case-by-case is certainly helpful, but if we don't even have a baseline to begin with about internet crimes, how can you tell if the law being applied is, in fact, equitable?
I feel that was a little rude...and since I'm not a rude person, I'll refrain from responding to it emotionally.
I'll just say that I disagree. the laws are not inclusive enough. yet. as it takes time to recognize and establish precedents for different crimes, people are falling by the wayside. that's all I was saying.
There are several sets of laws you speak of. The laws as regards statutory rape differ from state to state and those can be interpreted by a judge as there is grounds for exploitation even within the same age range as regards relations. The issue of internet harassment is being defined within the law that's correct and it does not a series of set legal precedents as that Myspace case involving stalking that lead to that girl committing suicide was difficult for the judge to prosecute because there were no set defined principles. Rationally speaking any pre-existing crime should be extended to online. Perhaps labelling that guy as a sex offender might (and I emphasize might) have been too much but regardless what he did was harassing and it should be prosecuted as such. I well understand the issue makes people emotional (which of course it would) but a judge has to rely on a set series of facts and interpret the law according to that so the laws should be revised so there is a clearly defined law to prevent this kind of activity to begin with.
First off -- should an 18 yr old even be having sex with a 16 yr old? She's still a minor.
AND, more importantly --- why in the world would anyone be e-mailing nude pics in the first place, especially to < 18 yr olds?? Even when you get mad at someone, that type of vindictiveness certainly shows that he doesn't have a whole lot of common sense.
Of course, I have to say that the girl didn't show real good common sense either for having the pics taken, then for sending them to the boy -- again, she needs to be aware of the consequences of her behavior.
Since I'm not into the legal aspects, I can't say much about the law. I'm speaking from a moral and/or common sense aspect.
I guess it depends on the angle that one views the world and their experiences in it that formulates our belief system. The girl sends the photos to her guy and because she is sixteen years old the only penalty to her is major embarrassment. Why was she too not charged with sending pics of a minor? My mother married at the age of 13. Yet today you would not let a girl marry at that age, but they are having sex? Yea an 18 year old boy ought to know better, but does he? We live in a time where people get pregnant to hang on to a guy without forethought of how that child will be taken care of. Marriages falling all around us to divorce and lots of the children a product of welfare as a result. No one takes responsibility anymore, parents do not parent, children grow up thinking they can do adult things without paying consequences and we as a society foot the bill for all of it. The morning radio talk shows tout sex to everyone who listens and anyone with access to a computer can get any vile thing they want to view. People resist change, but our world in the last 20 years has changed at such a pace that the laws need to be changed to address it as well. The average single parent no longer has one child but multiple children and very few of those moms are financially equipt to take care of themself much less the children. Drugs, depression running rampant in unheard of numbers and the quality of our childrens health over the last 20 years has declined as well. We are fat and lazy with no morals. I could count on one hand how many times my children were sick when I was raising them. Now my grandchildren are in the doctors office at least one time a week with something. If one of my kids were to have done something like this, they would tell you they would not have lived to tell about it. Son or daughter. But in this day and age that would be considered instilling fear in your children and you would be touted off to jail and your kids confiscated. Wake Up World!
I agree that was a part of my original point..I don't think that 18 year olds and sixteen year olds should have sexual relations....and I think that because they CAN legally, it makes the law a little more difficult to call when it comes to things like this.
I agree, I think that the situation becomes too emotional...and my point was that I think the case was OVER-prosecuted because of emotion on the part of whoever, the girl, her family.
I do have to emphasize that I have absolutely no tolerance for child molesters, and I would be happy if they were all executed. Violently. But I was just saying that in this particular case, the law exists with precedence, but I don't think it was specific enough to allow for a proper balance between crime and punishment, and in MY opinion, it resulted in an imbalance.
Rory:: You're exactly right! That's kinda what I was saying about a parent who says "sure, 18-year-old, date my 16-year-old. Wait, you pissed her off? You're now a child molester!" or, along the same vein, a 16-year-old who gets jilted by her 18-year-old lover and claims rape after the fact....I personally think that the "age of consent" is crap. If the person is NOT an adult, they should not be legally able to consent to sex with an adult.
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