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National

OH: Ohio House updates ‘sexting’ law related to minors

[norwalkreflector.com – 6/27/18]

COLUMBUS — State Reps. Brian Hill (R-Zanesville) and Jeff Rezabek (R-Clayton) today applauded the House for passing legislation they jointly sponsored that provides another option to Ohio’s courts when dealing with juveniles charged with possessing sexually explicit digital material, or engaging in “sexting” with a minor.

It was one of several bills OK’d today by the Ohio House of Representatives.

This bill takes into account the growing dilemma of juveniles who engage in “sexting” with other juveniles and the charges that may be filed by prosecutors by law. House Bill 355 prohibits anyone under the age of 19 from creating, distributing, or possessing sexually explicit digital material that depicts a minor through a phone or computer.

The law serves as an alternative option for prosecutors when determining whether to charge the offender with a felony, which has lifelong implications, or nothing at all. Offenders under the age of 19, and in which the victim was less than four years younger than the offender and over the age of 13, would then be eligible for a charge which carries with it a mandatory diversion program, which would cover a host of issues related to sexting, educating our youth about the dangers of doing so.

Provisions were placed in the bill to ensure that prosecutors can charge a more serious offense under qualifying circumstances if they want to pursue a heightened charge, rather than the diversion program.

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Join the discussion

  1. David

    If it saves just one child….. So felony sex offense charges are just fine for all those terrible sex offenders …. unless it leads a constituent’s son to commit society? But adults deserve to be homeless, jobless, ostracized and reviled??

  2. TS

    Why did you not just say between 14-18 years old instead of under 19 or over 13 are eligible for this program with someone who is less than 4 years younger (someone who is 1-3 years younger)? You are making people think here on applicability. Have to wonder about the prosecutors, politicians, and their staff. Understand they are not mathematicians, but complexity people! Use a chart!

    18 years means you are eligible for this if the victim is 15-17 years old
    17, 16-14
    16, 15-14,
    15, 14
    14, 14

  3. Joe123

    How about they use their brains a little more and extend that diversion program to first time pornography offenders? That would require too much common sense though, that’s what makes it impossible.

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