Boy meets girl. Both are teens. He, however, is seventeen. She, like the Taylor Swift song, is only fifteen.
Somebody in Prince William County, Virginia, however, is not a fan of teenage love (or lust). Now, because the young man did what lots of young people do with their smartphones, and responded to his former girlfriend's photos with a video of his penis, he's facing two felony child porn charges and the possibility of being a registered sex offender.
It gets worse: Prosecutors are so eager to prosecute the boy for photographing his own penis, that they not only took photos of his penis when he was arrested, but also have obtained a search warrant to take a photograph of his erect penis at a later date for comparison sake.
Yes. A police department charged a teenager with manufacturing and distributing child porn for taking a video of his own penis and sending it to his girlfriend, who had earlier sent him photos (presumably of an explicit nature as well), reports The Washington Post.
The kids call this "sexting."
Prince William County prosecutors call it "felonies."
The boy's family and attorney calls it a double standard, since his ex-girlfriend was not charged.
And in case you're wondering, the 17-year-old has a clean record, plays football, and is still in high school. If convicted, he could be incarcerated until the age of 21, and could be included on the registered sex offender list for life.
Now, because this is a juvenile case, and because the search warrant for pictures of the teen's penis has not been served, the documents are all private. We're assuming both parties played show-and-tell, based on what his attorney and aunt told NBC 4-DC. But should it emerge that the girlfriend's photos weren't explicit, the double standard issue goes out the window.
Either way: felonies and sex offender registration for sexting? Really?
How do you get a 17-year-old to stop sending pictures of his naughty bits to his significant other? Here's an idea: arrest him, and take photos of him nude in jail (against his will).
But wait, there's more! According to his attorney, prosecutors told him that if he refused to take a plea bargain, they would seek a court order to get him taken to a hospital for purposes of photographing his erect penis (for comparison sake). They even threatened to use a shot to induce an erection if necessary.
Virginia: The state that waists time and money to defend a law that outlaws consensual sexual acts and manufactures child porn in order to keep a teenager from taking a few self-portraits.
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- SCOTUS Rejects Cuccinelli's Stay Request on Va. Sodomy Ruling (FindLaw's Fourth Circuit Blog)
- Grope in Response to Homosexual Sex Sting, Flirtation Not Obscene (FindLaw's Fourth Circuit Blog)
- Request Sodomy From a Teen, Strike Down a Statute (FindLaw's Fourth Circuit Blog)