Saturday, January 18, 2014

Action Alert: HB1260 Will Make Teen “Sexting” a Misdemeanor Instead of a Possible Felony in Virginia

HB1260 is a great bill!  

§ 18.2-374.2:1. Electronic transmission of sexually explicit images between minors; penalty.  

A. Any minor who knowingly transmits, distributes, publishes, or disseminates to another minor an electronically transmitted communication containing a sexually explicit image of their own person is guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor.  

B. Any minor who knowingly possesses at least one but not more than ten electronically transmitted communications containing a sexually explicit image of another minor is guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor.  

C. Any minor who violates the provisions of subsections A or B shall be ordered to participate in such programs, cooperate in such treatment or be subject to such conditions and limitations as the court may order and as are designed for the rehabilitation of the child and to perform a mandatory minimum of hours of community service. Such conditions and limitation may include the completion a community-based program that addresses the consequences of transmitting, distributing, publishing, or disseminating sexually explicit images via an electronically transmitted communication and the restricted use of the Internet or computer, including an electronic communication device as defined in §18.2-190.1 

D. Whenever any minor who has not previously been convicted of an offense under subsection A, or B of this section pleads guilty to or enters a plea of not guilty to a violation of subsection A or B of this section, the court, upon such plea if the facts found by the court would justify a finding of guilt, without entering a judgment of guilt and with the consent of the accused and the attorney for the Commonwealth, may defer further proceedings and place him on probation upon terms and conditions for a period not exceeding one year. Upon violation of a term or condition, the court may enter an adjudication of guilt and proceed as otherwise provided. Upon fulfillment of the terms and conditions, the court shall discharge the person and dismiss the proceedings against him. Discharge and dismissal under this section shall be without adjudication of guilt and is a conviction only for the purposes of applying this section in subsequent proceedings.  

E. Venue for prosecution under this section may lie in the jurisdiction where the unlawful act occurs or where any sexually explicit image of a minor associated with a violation of this section is produced, reproduced, found, stored, or possessed.  

That the provisions of this act may result in a net increase in periods of imprisonment or commitment. Pursuant to § 30-19.1:4, the estimated amount of the necessary appropriation is $0 for periods of imprisonment in state adult correctional facilities; therefore, Chapter 806 of the Acts of Assembly of 2013 requires the Virginia Criminal Sentencing Commission to assign a minimum fiscal impact of $50,000.  

Pursuant to § 30-19.1:4, the estimated amount of the necessary appropriation is $0 for periods of commitment to the custody of the Department of Juvenile Justice. 

Today in Virginia teenagers who are minors if they “sext” they could face felony child pornography charges.

On Monday January 20, 2014 Docket- Virginia Bill SB553: Sex Offender Registry; Notification of Laws

Update January 20, 2014: 

This morning prior to the start of the Senate Courts of Justice meeting I spoke to Senator Marsden and the new Virginia State Police (VSP) Legislative Liaison about this years 5th attempt to get the VSP to disseminate the legal requirements to Virginia’s 20,000+ RSO’s every year in easily understandable terms. 

Senator Marsden asked the Committee “to pass this bill by for the day” as he’s waiting for information from the VSP which means the next time this bill is added to the Senate docket the patron must be ready to sell the bill or it will be “killed” by default for this session. 

The next Senate Courts of Justice hearing will be this Wednesday January 22 in the afternoon and the following hearing will be Monday January 27 in the morning. I will keep an eye on the dockets and unless I need to be down the hall in a House hearing to make an opposition statement I will attend the Senate hearing on SB553. 

If you have not already contacted the members of the Court of Justice Committee asking them to vote “YES” on SB553 when it is finally heard, please contact them today! Their email addresses and phone numbers are listed in the original January 9 post on SB553. 


Original Post:

Virginia Senate Courts of Justice Committee’s docket for January 20, 2014 has Senator Marsden’s great bill SB553 listed to be heard. 

If you have NOT yet contacted your one Delegate and one Senator about this bill please read the January 9 post about the bill and if you support it ask your two representatives to support it today! 

I will be attending the hearing to listen to the discussion but I will not be speaking in support of the bill for the reasons I listed in the January 9 post. It’s too important of a bill to allow the personal opinions against me by some of the lawmakers “kill it” out of spite. 

Thank you! 

Mary Devoy

Newly Proposed Legislation From this Week Has All Been Added to the 2014 Virginia General Assembly Page

Yesterday was Bill-Cut-Off Day, but that does not mean all the submitted bills are loaded into LIS yet. 

As of 12PM today I’m caught up for all LIS-listed bills, but I’m sure a few more will post on Monday and maybe Tuesday. So there may still be a bill with a new mandate, restriction or unintended consequence we just have to wait and see. 

Bills that I’m monitoring or opposing can be found here: 2014 Proposed Legislation  

Bills on topic that I am not opposing can be found here: January 7 Post