Maryland bill would lessen punishment for some teen sexting

Maryland

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WDVM) — A bill that changes how juveniles are charged for sexting in Maryland was passed in the house with a wide majority.

This new bill would lessen the punishment for some teen sexting and separate the act from child pornography. While this does not legalize sexting for juveniles, only in extraordinary circumstances would a juvenile be committed to custody or have to register as a sex offender.

In a written testimony the Maryland Office of the Public Defender wrote the bill leaves too much to the discretion of police and prosecutors. While proponents for the bill say teenage sexting is not child pornography so should not be prosecuted as a criminal act. 

This bill also includes a very important educational component in the sentence so kids can learn about the risks of sexting. This bill as of now has only been passed in the house and still needs to be passed in the senate next.

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