Tuesday, December 3, 2013

NJ - Kid Gets Arrested for Child Porn for Putting Up Naked Pictures of Herself

Juvenile Sex Offenders
Original Article

03/27/2009

By Beth Defalco

TRENTON - A 14-year-old New Jersey girl has been accused of child pornography after posting nearly 30 explicit nude pictures of herself on MySpace.com — charges that could force her to register as a sex offender if convicted.

The case comes as prosecutors nationwide pursue child-pornography cases resulting from kids sending nude photos to one another over cellphones and e-mail, a practice called "sexting." Legal experts, though, could not recall another case of a child-porn charge resulting from a teen's posting to a social networking site.

MySpace would not comment on the New Jersey investigation, but the company has a team that reviews its network for inappropriate images. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children tipped off a state task force, which alerted the Passaic County Sheriff's Office.

The office investigated and discovered the Clifton resident had posted the "very explicit" photos of herself, sheriff's spokesman Bill Maer said Thursday.

"We consider this case a wake-up call to parents," Maer said.

The girl posted the photos because "she wanted her boyfriend to see them," he said.

Investigators are looking at individuals who "knowingly" committed a crime, he said, declining to comment further because the case is still being investigated.

The teen, whose name has not been released because of her age, was arrested and charged with possession of child pornography and distribution of child pornography. She was released to her mother's custody.

If convicted of the distribution charge, she would be forced to register with the state as a sex offender under Megan's Law, said state Attorney General Anne Milgram. She also could face up to 17 years in jail, though such a stiff sentence is unlikely.

Maureen Kanka — whose daughter, Megan, became the law's namesake after she was raped and killed at age 7 in 1994 by a twice-convicted sex offender — blasted authorities for charging the 14-year-old girl.

The teen needs help, not legal trouble, she said. "This shouldn't fall under Megan's Law in any way, shape or form," she said. "She should have an intervention and counseling because the only person she exploited was herself."


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