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Deciphering North Carolina’s Revenge Porn Laws

Revenge porn is a serious issue many states are beginning to tackle. In recent years, multiple states have started to pass laws regarding revenge porn, and in North Carolina, revenge porn is a criminal act.

Not sure what revenge porn is? You are not alone. An example of revenge porn might be if a couple opts to take photos with sexual content when they are dating or married. If the couple breaks up and one partner decides to post photos of the other partner on the web — without their consent — he or she is committing a crime.

Have you been accused of distributing revenge porn? Are you thinking about suing somebody for revenge porn? Read on to learn more about the road ahead of you.

The History of Revenge Porn in North Carolina

North Carolina passed its first laws surrounding revenge porn in 2015, and these laws initially began as a way to legally punish people who had leaked private or explicit photos of an individual they were in a relationship with. Unfortunately, this first law had many loopholes.

Another law passed that redefined the classification of personal relationship to allow for situations like a one night stand, which allowed for more individuals to be potentially subjected to revenge porn laws in the state.

An additional new law would make it illegal to post nude or sexual images of an individual, regardless of their relationship status with the accused, without his or her consent. The new law required the publication of intimate content for coercion, humiliation, intimidation, or financial loss. The accused party does not have to have any relationship with the victim. In fact, he or she could be a total stranger.

The Evidence Needed for Revenge Porn Cases

Individuals who are found guilty of revenge porn in North Carolina are required to have knowingly disclosed images of an individual with intent to humiliate, demean, intimidate, harass, or coerce another party.

The individual depicted in the distributed images must be identifiable in the images in some way. The disclosure could be evident in the image itself or in the context of the photo’s description or distribution.

Finally, the individual must not have affirmed consent of the photo’s release. They may not even have known the photo was posted until another person alerted them to it. Perhaps they suffered financial losses or humiliation by another person.

The photos themselves typically include intimate body parts, including the breasts and genitals. Photos may depict actual or simulated sexual activity.

The Punishment for Revenge Porn

Revenge porn laws differ from case to case. As a result, the punishment the individual faces depends on factors like age and prior offenses.

If the defendant is 18 or older at the time of the offense, he or she is charged with a Class H felony. A Class H felony comes with up to 25 months in prison.

Minors charged with this revenge crime law in North Carolina face a Class 1 misdemeanor the first time. Any occurrence after the fact is a Class H felony.

The court also has the right to order the destruction of the images in question. If the defendant fails to destroy the images, he or she may be subjected to other crimes.

The victim of revenge porn also has the right to pursue a civil court case against anybody accused of breaking revenge porn laws.

The Legal Challenges of Revenge Porn in North Carolina

Revenge porn laws can be tricky. If you are seeking a criminal defense or personal injury attorney who understands North Carolina’s revenge porn laws, you have somebody you can count on. Carl L. Britt, Jr. Attorney at Law offers legal defense and personal injury help when you need it most.

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