Colorado Sex Crime Attorney Blog

Sexting / Texting: One Naked Photo Could Be Disastrous in Denver

Posted by Kyle B. Sawyer | Feb 21, 2014 | 0 Comments

One naked picture could be a disaster in Colorado. Learn more about sexting.
Today's teenagers don't have an understanding of privacy. When this lack of comprehension is combined with the hormones involved in growing up and unyielding laws in Denver, Adams, and Jefferson County, our kids are in danger. Sexting and texting is a problem in our schools and communities. More and more kids own smartphones, but most of them don't understand the danger they hold in their hands. They think the naked or nude photos they send to friends or a boy they like at school are private. Nothing is further from the truth. If the photos get shared and someone reports them, your kids could be charged with Sexual Exploitation of a Child – C.R.S. 18-6-403.

One Naked Photo Could Equal Felony Charges in Colorado

Sexting technically is a form of Sexual Exploitation of a Child. This crime is a felony sex offense in Douglas, Arapahoe, and Larimer County. According to Colorado statute, a person will be charged with this offense if they create, distribute, or possess “sexually exploitative material.” Technically, a naked photo alone isn't “sexually exploitative,” but prosecutors and the police ignore this “tiny” detail and charge people anyway. The U.S. Supreme Court even stated: “Depictions of nudity, without more, constitute protected expression. See Ferber, supra, at 765, n. 18.” Osborne v. Ohio, 495 U.S. 103, 112, 110 S. Ct. 1691 (1990) (read this case online). District Attorneys and the police ignore the law and charge curious teenagers with serious sex offenses.

Sexting: A Dangerous Pastime Which Can Destroy Futures

Teenagers may think sexting is private. They don't realize one slip of the finger can forward nude or sexual photos to entire contact lists. A careless friend or a revengeful ex-boyfriend can share the photo you thought was only for their eyes. A person can even be charged with Sexual Exploitation of a Child even if they weren't the intended recipient – or if the material wasn't solicited. We once defended a teenage boy who received an unsolicited photo from a girl (thankfully, we were able to get his case dismissed). We also defended another young man who requested a photo (which is common, acceptable behavior in schools today), and then forwarded it to his friends (which is charged as “distribution”). This second case was more serious – the DA believed the young man was “promoting” the photos, which was worse (in his mind).

Don't Flirt With Disaster

Unfortunately, the serious sex offense charges which can result from sexting and texting can have an extremely destructive effect on your child's life. A conviction of Sexual Exploitation of a Child will result in mandatory sex offender treatment overseen by the SOMB (a child caught sexting will be treated similar to a serial rapist). Sex offender registration is also required, which greatly limits a person's ability to get ahead in life. If your child gets caught up in a sexting scandal, don't hesitate to contact one of our experienced criminal defense attorneys before the police examine your child's cell phone or computer.

Request a Free Consultation

If your child was sexting and sent a naked photo, and has been charged with a sex offense in Thornton, Englewood, or Centennial, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the O'Malley Law Office at 303-830-0880, or submit the
Get Help Now” form.Together, we can protect your future.

Image Courtesy of nenetus /

About the Author

Kyle B. Sawyer

I have a passion for defending others in criminal cases. I am able to empathize with my clients and understand their emotions and fears. I have a unique perspective on the criminal justice system and I understand what it feels like to be wrongly accused of a crime.


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