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Exposing Minors to Harmful Media Materials

Sarasota Criminal Lawyers Defending Your Constitutional Rights

Criminal charges can be split up into dozens of different categories. Crimes can be labeled as violent or nonviolent offenses. They can be categorized as state or Federal in nature. Crimes can also be put into groups based on the nature of the charge, such as sex crimes, economic crimes, or drug crimes. The most important distinction to consider how case will be prosecuted though, is whether the charged offense is a victimless crime or a victim based crime. IN victimless offenses, the prosecution has broad authority to negotiate and resolve the case on their own without any outside input. But when a victim is involved, whether the crime is violent, sexual or economic in nature, the prosecution owes a separate duty to try to follow the victim’s wishes during the prosecution.

Victim based crimes are also treated more seriously. When a victim is physically, emotionally, or mentally harmed by a crime, prosecutors and judges are more likely to seek more serious sentences. This simply reflects society’s general desire to seek justice and even revenge on behalf of the victims of crime. Just like how criminal offenses can be broken up into a myriad of categories, types of victims can be split into categories. And among all victims, child victims are treated with the most attention and the most seriousness. If you or a loved one has been charged with a crime involving a child victim, you should not hesitate to consult with a dedicated Sarasota criminal defense lawyer to help you understand the best moves to make on your case.

Child victims are especially protected when it comes to prosecutions for sex offenses. Crimes like sexual battery on a child victim and even possession of child pornography are the types of offenses that often result in lengthy sentences and difficult lifetime restrictions. Prosecutors feel an extra duty to seek justice on behalf of child victims, who are often defenseless on their own. The law intends to protect children from both physical exploitation and from exposure to obscene and harmful materials.

Elements of Exposing a Minor to Harmful Material

One of the many criminal charges in Florida involving child victims is exposing minors to harmful materials. The offense is codified by Florida Statute Section 847.013. Under the law, a person is prohibited from knowingly exhibiting or renting or selling any media that depicts harmful materials. The law defines harmful media very broadly. Any visual representation of nudity, sexual conduct, sexual excitement, sexual battery, bestiality, or sadomasochistic abuse can be interpreted as harmful material. A person’s ignorance of the minor’s age, unlike in statutory rape prosecutions, is a potential defense to the crime.

Luckily there are some protections built into the statute that protects purveyors of legitimate businesses from minors who themselves break the law to obtain adult materials. It is also a violation of this statute for a minor to use false representation in order to convince an owner or operator of an adult store that he or she is older than 17. This is the classic offense that punishes minors for using fake IDs. Both the offenses punishing the purveyors and the minors themselves are first degree misdemeanors punishable by up to one year in jail. If you or your loved one has been charged with any of the offenses described above, you should not hesitate to contact a dedicated Sarasota criminal defense lawyer to understand your options.

Speak to Our Lawyers Today

The attorneys at Hanlon Law pride themselves on the exceptional results that they achieve for their clients. We believe that we are only as we treat our worst cases. We treat every case, no matter how serious or difficult, with the respect and determination required of a zealous criminal defense lawyer. To find out how we can help you resolve your criminal matter, call us today for a consultation at 941.462.1789.

Client Reviews
As a practicing attorney, I was shocked to hear that a family member of mine was alleged to have committed a sex crime. Knowing full well the consequences this type of allegation can have on anyone and their future, I immediately reached out to William Hanlon for help... Jerry
Was on the ball. Remembered names, events, places, situations. Never need to re explain the situation. Keeps in touch through out the entire experience and keeps you feeling safe, comforted and protected. Fights hard. Worth every single penny. Would never settle for anything less than Will. Carrie
I was facing a charge that if convicted would carry two years in prison minimally. Not only was he empathetic and listening to what I had to say but he arranged with the prosecutor for my charges not to be filed under terms of a pre trial investigation. Would highly recommend. Alec
I am very happy for what he did for me. Always there when I needed him. Explained everything well. He Fights for his clients. He got me what I needed. Hes an excellent lawyer. Mutaz
Mr. Hanlon did what no other lawyer could do. Not only did he turn my criminal history into a thing of the past so I could move on, he was a loyal associate. No matter how bad the situation is, he has miraculously cleared me on every charge since he became my lawyer 5 years ago. I have the best lawyer that the legal system has to offer. I have had other really good lawyers try to get my business, but I know that no one can do a better job than William Hanlon. Jesse