State Senate passes bill making “revenge porn” a crime

ALBANY, N.Y. (WIVB) – Lawmakers are taking action to make sharing so-called “revenge porn” a class A misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail.

The State Senate passed legislation Wednesday that makes it a crime to disseminate “sexually intimate images or images of intimate parts of another person without that person’s explicit consent in order to harm, harass, scare or alarm that individual.” A first offense could result in one year in jail, while a repeat offense within 10 years would be a class E felony, punishable up to four years in prison.

Current law already protects a person if they are unaware the images are being taken. However, if they are aware, there is nothing stopping a former partner from spreading those images online when the relationship ends.

The bill is sponsored by Senator Phil Boyle (R) of Suffolk County, who said, “Revenge porn can ruin a person’s life, family and career. As the social media phenomenon grows, more and more men and women are being violated and exploited. These private images go viral to the world and there is little or no legal recourse afforded to the victims.”

“This legislation would give our law enforcement officials the tools they need to protect New Yorkers from the devastation wrought by revenge porn.”

The bill now moves to the State Assembly.

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