From our Through the Looking Glass desk
The headscratching staff is having some trouble absorbing this story from the Fayetteville (N.C.) Observer (tip o’ the pixel to The Daily Beast).
NC Law: Teens who take nude selfie photos face adult sex charges
After a 16-year-old Fayetteville girl made a sexually explicit nude photo of herself for her boyfriend last fall, the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office concluded that she committed two felony sex crimes against herself and arrested her in February.
The girl was listed on a warrant as both the adult perpetrator and the minor victim of two counts of sexual exploitation of minor – second-degree exploitation for making her photo and third-degree exploitation for having her photo in her possession.
Huh? Committed two sex crimes against herself?
Paging Mr. Escher. Paging Mr. M.C. Escher . . .
As the piece by Paul Wolverton notes, “[a] conviction could have put the girl in prison and would have required her to register as a sex offender for the rest of her life.” Instead she got a plea bargain which should clear her record next year.
Not so lucky, though, is the boyfriend, who faces five sexual exploitation of a minor charges (she was 15 at the time, he was 16), along with the possibility of prison time and lifelong sexual offender status. Seems a pretty heavy price to pay for what were essentially Romeo and Juliet sexts.
Especially considering that an estimated 28% of teens use mobile phones to swap naked pictures of themselves.
Hey, Fayetteville, you’re gonna need a bigger prison.