Is That Even Legal?

Revenge Porn is Becoming Pervasive...

April 04, 2022 Attorney Robert Sewell
Is That Even Legal?
Revenge Porn is Becoming Pervasive...
Show Notes

Revenge Porn has recently been the plot of daytime soap operas, been an issue on international reality shows, and of course has had a number of high profile celebrity victims in recent years.

Increasingly, however, for many married couples whose relationships go south, the issue is hitting  close to home during divorce discussions as threats to reveal intimate photos are made or acted upon. 

Furthermore, when teen romances involving underage pictures are involved, serious felonies can be committed when images are stored viewed and or distributed.

As of 2020, 42 states and the District of Columbia have specific laws outlawing distribution of revenge porn. However, revenge porn laws are still relatively new and the laws are continuing to develop. The crimes however, are multiplying.

While each state has different laws, most generally define the crime of revenge porn as any person, with the intent to harass or annoy another who:

  • Publishes or distributes electronic or printed photographs, pictures, or films that
  • Show the genitals, anus, or female breast of the other person, or
  • Depicts that person engaged in a sexual act.

In this episode, Bob talks with Divorce specialist Douglas Gardner and Criminal Defense attorney Russel Richelsoph to find out what is legal. This is an important episode for everyone in today's society.

Show Notes:

Scenario 1:  Photos of Couple

Many couples have, during the good times, photographed or videoed themselves or their partner or both together in intimate ways.  While such videos or photographs may be seen by the parties as appropriate and acceptable at the time the videos or photographs are taken, these photographs and videos can become very awkward during and after a divorce.

First, follow the Golden Rule.  Delete photos of others, as you would want them to delete photos of you.  As part of your “moving forward to a new life” delete such intimate photos or videos of your former spouse or partner.  If you are aware of photos or videos your partner may have, you can ask politely that they also delete them.

Second, never store intimate photos or videos online, or post to any form of social media.  What gets posted online or social media, seems to stay online or social media.  Protect yourself and your partner or former partner, and keep personal control over such items.

Third, while there may be no real way to know for sure if such photos or videos have been deleted, please understand that publishing or posting or sharing photos of an un-consenting ex-spouse or partner could be a criminal matter, and could result in an Order of Protection and other legal action being taken against you.  It is not worth it.

In Arizona, where Is That Even Legal? originates, Revenge Porn is a Class 4 felony, punishable by up to 1.5 years in prison and a fine up to $150,000 and could in some cases require registration as a sexual offender. 

Specifically, A. R. S. § 13-1425 makes it a criminal offense to intentionally disclose the image of an identifiable person in a state of nudity or engaged in sexual activity, when the person has an expectation of privacy, with the intent to harm, harass, intimidate, threaten, or coerce the depicted person.”