The American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania (ACLUPA), the Pennsylvania branch of the national ACLU, filed a claim against the Wyoming County district attorney over charges the DA was threatening to prosecute against three teenagers involved in a sexting scandal. As I wrote earlier in my post about this particular sexting case, the DA is bringing charges against these teenage girls for allegedly acting as accomplices in the creation of child pornography. There is a hearing scheduled for March 26, 2009, to determine what rights these three teenagers have related to threats for prosectution. The interesting wrinkle to this situation is the DA’s decision not to charge any of the individuals who shared the pictures with others.
I don’t believe, under these circumstances, the DA should be able to threaten prosecution for girls who were simply having somewhat harmless fun when the people who spread the pictures all over the place go unpunished. It makes no sense to hold these girls responsible for what they almost certainly assumed would be private images only to be shared with the receiving party. It’s highly doubtable they were intending these sexting images to be shared with the entire world. It’s a shame the people who received these pictures decided to break that trust, but the girls are clearly the innocent parties in this and do not deserve to be punished for their actions. Hopefully the ACLU will be successful in their claims in order to promote fair and honest prosecutions.