Bill vs. ‘revenge porn’

The full Senate has approved Sen. David Holt’s legislation to make “revenge porn” a crime in Oklahoma.

Senate Bill 1257 passed the Senate 39-0.  The measure criminalizes the unauthorized dissemination of intimate photos or video – usually after a relationship has ended – an act commonly referred to as “revenge porn.”

“This is a purely destructive act that almost exclusively targets women, and it should be a crime,” said Holt, R-Oklahoma City. “We are simply acknowledging today that our statutes have to keep up with modern crimes.  This act should never have been socially acceptable, but to this point it has been legally acceptable.  I am very hopeful that is about to change.”

SB 1257 provides that a person commits a crime when they intentionally disseminate an image of another identifiable person who is engaged in a sexual act or is nude; they obtained the image under circumstances that would lead a reasonable person to know that the image was private; the image was disseminated with an intent to harass, intimidate or coerce, and they knew or should have known that the dissemination was nonconsensual.

The legislation exempts disseminations related to law enforcement investigations, reporting of unlawful conduct, or when the exposure or sexual act was committed in public or in a commercial setting.  In most instances, the act of “revenge porn” is committed by a person who captured or accepted the image in the context of a trusting relationship that has ended, at which time the person disseminated the image on the Internet.  The measure also gives judges the ability to order the image be removed, if that is still within the power of the person who committed the act.  Someone convicted of the crime can be sentenced to up to one year in a county jail, and a fine.

SB 1257 was authored in the House by Rep. John Paul Jordan, R- Yukon.