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Transmission of Harmful Material to a Minor

Sarasota Criminal Lawyers Representing the Accused

Some classes of people are protected by the laws of the land to a greater degree than others. This is largely a reaction to our government’s and society’s persecution of those same groups for a great deal of time. Black people, people in the LGBTQ community, and now undocumented immigrants have all suffered hardships both great and small at the hands of the government. As society shifts, laws are instituted to protect those classes from further harm. Hate crime laws increase criminal penalties for cases where victims are members of a protected class. Equal protection and civil rights laws have been passed in order to right the past wrongs done by the government against disenfranchised people.

Some laws have been put in place to protect classes of people who are vulnerable just from the nature of their being, and not related to their past treatment by the government and society. The most glaring example of that type of class is children. While there are certainly people in our society that think that minorities and members of the LGBTQ community should not be treated any differently than anyone else, you’d be hard pressed to find anyone who would admit that children should not be treated differently. As a result, crimes involving children and crimes against children in Florida are treated very seriously and carry significantly enhanced penalties for those who are convicted of such offenses. If you or a loved one has been charged with a crime involving a child, you should not hesitate to contact a Sarasota criminal defense lawyer to help build your defense.

Elements of Transmission Of Harmful Material to a Minor

One of Florida’s criminal offenses that has been instituted to protect minors from exploitation by potential predators is the offense of transmission of harmful material to a minor. When most people see this type of offense charged, they automatically assume that the offense relates to child pornography. In reality, transmission of harmful material to a minor involves a vast array of materials that the government considers “harmful.” In order to prove the offense, the state must prove that the defendant knowingly sold, rented, or lent any image, picture, video, sculpture or visual representation depicting a human body which depicts nudity, sexual conduct, sexual battery, or sexual excitement to a person they knew to be a minor. The state must also prove that the images, in whatever form, were “harmful to minors.” These vague terms and descriptions make it easy for the state to bring charges against people under a variety of circumstances. Don’t become a victim of the state’s criminal justice system, hire a dedicated Sarasota criminal defense attorney to represent you.

The key term in the statute prohibiting transmission harmful to a minor is the term “harmful to a minor.” The statute itself fails to define what that term actually means. This is a problem that is emblematic of the state’s criminal justice system. The hit movie “Titanic” contains depictions of nudity and sexual conduct. The MPAA rated Titanic PG-13 meaning that anyone 13 or up would be allowed to see the film. If someone at a video rental store rented out a copy of Titanic to a minor, would that person be guilty of transmission of harmful material to a minor? You might balk at that and say “absolutely not,” but under the language of the statute, a particularly vindictive prosecutor could argue that the content included in that film fit the wording of the statute. Don’t allow the state to take advantage of the vague wording of the law. Hire a dedicated Sarasota criminal lawyer to advise you.

Speak to our Lawyers Today

The attorneys at Hanlon Law have years of combined experience that we will put to work in order to ensure the best possible result for your case. Contact us today for a consultation at 727-897-5413.

Client Reviews
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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