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Revenge Porn – Cyber Rape Facts

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Revenge Porn – Cyber Rape Facts

December 19, 2014 by Parrish Law Firm, PLLC

Imagine browsing through the Internet and finding that an ex-partner or someone who wants to tarnish your reputation has posted sexually explicit images of you online. Finding that these images have been posted without your consent, to seek revenge for ending the relationship with them or another reason. This type of privacy violation, known as Revenge Pornography or Cyber-Rape, has become alarmingly commonplace. A survey of adults in the United States revealed that approximately 10 percent of ex-partners have threatened to post sexually explicit photos of them online and close to 60 percent of those threats became reality (McAfee, 2013). Victims of this type of action have been coming forward after finding explicit images of themselves on revenge-porn websites – yes there are sites for this! These sites allow formerly trusted friends and lovers to post this type of material anonymously and therefore avoid the risk of repercussion. Many of these sites include victims’ contact information, putting the victim’s safety into question as well as their reputations.

Woman charged under new Virginia revenge porn law

Waynesboro police tell media outlets that 28-year-old Rachel Lynn Craig is accused of posting a nude photograph of another woman on Facebook. I was alleged that Ms. Craig, while in a fit of rage, went on her ex’s cellphone and took the the compromising image that the 22-year-old victim had sent him. She then posted it online for all to see. She was arrested and released Saturday after the victim complained.

The law went into effect July 1, 2014 in Virginia which makes it illegal to distribute a sexually explicit image of others without their permission. The phenomenon is called “revenge porn” or “cyber rape”.

Virginia: Unlawful dissemination or sale of images of another person; class 1 misdemeanor. Code of Virginia 18.2-386.2

Governor Terry McAuliffe signed a bill effective July 1 making it a Class 1 Misdemeanor to post sexually explicit pictures online with the intent of harassing another person. Those found guilty face up to one year in prison and a $2500 fine. Considering the emotional damage, the embarrassment and possible negative impact on a person’s career that having porn “of you” on the web for all to see – it is commendable that Virginia has passed the Bill to make this action illegal.

The Law

The statute in question, with limited exceptions, makes it a crime to:

  • “Intentionally disclose, display, distribute, publish, advertise or offer”
  • “A photograph, videotape, film or digital recording”

of someone who is either naked or “engaged in specific sexual activities”

  • “If the actor knows or should have known that person in the image or recording hasn’t consented to disclosure.”
  • “Specific sexual activities” include what you might imagine they would: masturbation, fondling, intercourse, and beyond. (Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§ 13-1425, 11-811.)

The crime, a class 5 felony, becomes a class 4 felony if the victim is “recognizable” and people familiar with the person displayed can recognize them. That type of classification means a potential prison sentences exceeding two years in length.

HB 326 Unlawful dissemination or sale of images of another; person is guilty of Class 1 misdemeanor.

Unlawful dissemination or sale of images of another; penalty. Provides that a person is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor if he, with the intent to coerce, harass, or intimidate the depicted person, maliciously disseminates or sells any videographic or still image created by any means whatsoever that depicts another person who is totally nude or in a state of undress so as to expose the genitals, pubic area, buttocks, or female breasts, where such person knows or has reason to know that he is not licensed or authorized to do so. The bill also amends the crime of creating an image of a nonconsenting person by substituting the term “videographic or still image created by any means whatsoever” for the current term “videotape, photograph, or film.” This bill incorporates HB 49.

HB 49 Unlawful dissemination or sale of images of another; person is guilty of Class 1 misdemeanor.

Unlawful dissemination or sale of images of another. Provides that a person is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor if he, with the intent to cause substantial emotional distress, disseminates or sells any videotape, photograph, film, or other videographic or still image or reproduction thereof that depicts another person who is totally nude, in a state of undress, or engaged in sexual conduct where such person knows or has reason to know that he is not licensed or privileged to do so and the person depicted suffers substantial emotional distress. This bill was incorporated into HB 326.

Parrish Law Firm, PLLC Revenge Porn – Cyber Rape Attorney, located in Manassas and Fairfax works with Northern Virginia citizens who have suffered from the effects of Revenge Porn – Cyber Rape and are looking for fair compensation for their suffering. Contact us today for a free case consultation, or call us at 703-906-4229.

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A representative of the Parrish Law Firm, PLLC researched and wrote this article with Mr. Parrish’s consent. If you have any questions regarding the legal implications of what you have just read, please send us your question by clicking here so we can have our attorney review it.

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