There are sex crimes being committed every day in high schools in Denver, Arapahoe, and Jefferson County, and all across Colorado. These crimes are being committed openly. In fact, the offense is assumed and expected. This crime is Sexual Exploitation of a Child – C.R.S. 18-6-403, and it is committed when teens engage in sexting. In this blog, we'll take a look at why kids sext, and how easy it is for them to be charged with a sex offense if they are caught.
It's Common for Kids to Sext in Douglas and Arapahoe County
I read an article recently which discussed how common sexting really is among teenagers. In one school in another state, the police began investigating at a high school after hundreds of illegal photos of young people were posted to an Instagram account. Students were interviewed in an attempt to find out how many of them were part of a “sexting ring” at the school. They believed the sexting was an organized criminal affair – in realty, it was much more widespread than they thought. When questioned about how many of them had sexted, most students replied: “everyone.” Hundreds of phones were confiscated because they contained child porn. The police soon realized that the “victims” of the exploitation had created the photos themselves and willingly sent them to boys. The police went from calling the girls “victims,” to “I guess I'll call them victims,” to “they victimized themselves.” It was found that young women were expected to provide images – many were pressured, but many willingly participated. The boys didn't view the photos as anything too special –after all, pornography is available at the touch of a button. Instead, they viewed the photos more as a Pokémon or baseball card collection – proudly showing off their latest find with their friends.[pullquote align=”center” textalign=”center” width=”60%”]Teenagers feel invincible, and don't realize sexting can be a crime with serious implications.[/pullquote]
When Kids Sext, is it a Crime?
When kids sext, they don't understand the legal implications which could have a huge impact on their future. They feel invincible, and don't realize that creating, sharing, or possessing sexually explicit photos of underage people is a crime in Littleton, Highlands Ranch, and Aurora. It is called Sexual Exploitation of a Child. In Adams, Douglas, and El Paso County, it is a serious sex offense which results in prison time for adults who are convicted. Also, it is a sex offense, which means a juvenile adjudicated or convicted of the offense would be required to register as a sex offender and go through sex offender treatment overseen by the Colorado Sex Offender Management Board (SOMB).