Is Your Child Sexting?
In this day and age, we carry our lives on our phones and can do practically anything with them, including chat, manage finances, pay bills – and flirt with romantic partners. Generally speaking, the term “sexting” refers to sending photos or videos via text message that are sexually suggestive and/or which depict nudity.
When individuals who have reached the age of majority (i.e., adults) engage in sexting, the practice is fairly harmless. However, sexting can be problematic – and sometimes illegal – when either one or both of the involved individuals are under the age of consent in the State of Texas. Even in cases where both of the individuals doing the sexting are under the age of consent, this activity is still considered transmitting or possessing sexual depictions of children by electronic means, which is a type of child pornography.
If your child is facing a criminal sex crime charge, Lewisville sex crimes lawyer Brent D. Bowen, Attorney at Law, is ready to assist. Let us help you review your legal options and select the best possible option for your criminal case.
Texas Sexting Laws that Apply to Minors
In the State of Texas, it is against the law for a minor to send a text message that contains sexually suggestive images – or to send sexually explicit content that depicts one or more individuals who are under the age of 18 – to another individual who is also a minor. These illegal types of text messages include those that contain images of the text recipient, sender, or some other minor.
In some instances, illegal sexting can result in misdemeanor charges. These charges can come about in the following circumstances:
- The images depict the recipient or the sender of the message
- The images were sent while the individuals were in a dating relationship
- There were no more than two years between the individuals who took part in the texting (even in cases where one of the individuals who took part in the texting was more than 18 years of age)
However, in cases where the sexting involves an adult who is dating a minor individual – and whose age is more than two years that of the minor – the charges and potential penalties can be much more serious. In those instances, the adult may be criminally charged with distributing or possessing child pornography, distributing sexual images to a minor, or promoting a sexual performance by a child who is a minor.
Any of these charges can lead to the adult having to register as a sex offender for the remainder of his or her life. Moreover, the adult may face prosecution at the federal level.
Call a Lewisville Sex Crimes Attorney about Your Criminal Charge Today
If you or your loved one is facing a criminal charge for a sex crime, Brent D. Bowen, Attorney at Law, is here to assist you with all aspects of defending your criminal case. To schedule a free consultation and case evaluation with a knowledgeable Lewisville sex crimes lawyer, please call us today at (940) 222-2488 or contact us online to learn more.