Teenage Texts are Not Always PG
For teenagers, sending sexually explicit materials and photos via text can result in serious criminal charges.
For parents today, discussing issues concerning sex with your children is complicated. Due to the amount of information available online and the sexually explicit nature of certain movies, television shows, or even commercials, they likely already know more than you suspect. They may have even begun experimenting, often through sexually charged texts they send to their friends. Unfortunately, this can create serious legal problems for your teenager. If your child is accused of ‘sexting’ or similar activities, it is important to get our experienced Gwinnett County defense attorneys on your side.
Teens and Sexting
Sexting involves sending nude or other sexually-based images and materials to others via your phone. For teens, it often is one of the first ways they go about exploring their emerging sexuality. Unfortunately, they generally lack the maturity to make good decisions in regard to the types of materials being sent or awareness that their activities could be against the law.
According to a 2019 study published by Pediatrics titled Teenagers, Sexting, and the Law, 15% of all teens admit to sending sexually explicit texts while more than 25% admit to being on the receiving end of these communications. Most see these activities as being relatively harmless, but they fail to factor in their own age and the ages of anyone in the images being relayed.
Most states have strict laws when it comes to the sexual exploitation of minors. Regardless of your teen’s intent in sending certain images or whether others consented in having them taken, if it involves young people under the age of 18, it can be considered child pornography, a serious crime that could have long term ramifications on your child’s life.
Charges Related to Teens and Sexting
Teens may send nude images of themselves to a boyfriend or girlfriend or they may send materials passed along by others or downloaded through websites. Unfortunately, these types of texts could result in serious criminal charges. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation advises that the state takes a strong stand against child pornography, regardless of the age of the perpetrator or their intent. Activities that could result in your child being charged include:
Creating or possessing nude images of themselves if they are under the age of 14;
Possessing or creating nude images of other teens if they are under the age of 17;
Furnishing obscene or nude images to other teens via text or other electronic means if they are under 18.
All of these are misdemeanor charges which could result in fines, community service requirements, probation, or even placement in a juvenile detention facility.
Contact Our Norcross, GA Juvenile Defense Attorneys Right Away
When your child faces criminal charges related to sexting or similar crimes, Zimmerman & Associates provides the aggressive legal representation needed to protect them. Call or contact our Gwinnett County juvenile defense attorneys online to request an immediate consultation.