Second-Degree Sexual Exploitation of a Minor
Child pornography crimes are among the most harshly prosecuted and punished offenses in North Carolina. However, getting arrested for child exploitation doesn’t necessarily mean you’re guilty of a crime. At the Olsinski Law Firm, PLLC, we’ve assembled a dedicated team of child pornography lawyers who dedicate their practice to providing thorough, strategic and effective representation to clients facing charges of sexual exploitation of a minor in the second degree.What is Second-Degree Sexual Exploitation of a Minor?
North Carolina law refers to child pornography offenses as “sexual exploitation of a minor” charges. Second degree sexual exploitation of a minor is essentially a law that imposes harsh penalties on anyone who duplicates or distributes material that qualifies as child pornography.
More specifically, under North Carolina General Statutes § 14-190.17, second degree sexual exploitation of a minor occurs when someone:
- Records, photographs, films, or otherwise duplicates material that depicts a minor engaged in sexual activity; or
- Distributes, transports, displays, sells, buys, exchanges, or solicits material content depicting a minor engaged in sexual activity.
North Carolina’s child pornography laws apply to any content that depicts a minor engaging in sexual activity. Under North Carolina General Statutes § 14-190.13, “sexual activity” includes intercourse but also includes conduct such as:
- Actual or simulated sexual abuse;
- The touching of genitals, over or under the clothes, when the touching is for sexual purposes;
- Acts of torture, flagellation, or abuse when performed by someone in undergarments or a “bizarre costume”;
- Excretory functions, and
- The lascivious display of the public region.
It can be hard to understand the difference between North Carolina’s child pornography laws. Below are a few examples of conduct that might constitute second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor:
- Sending or receiving an email containing a single image of a person who appears to be under 18 having vaginal sex with an adult man;
- Making a copy of images depicting nude images from a friend’s flash drive; and
- Seeking to purchase (soliciting) child pornography online.
Of course, there are many other examples. And often, prosecutors will bring multiple charges based on a single image or video. For example, they may file third and second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor charges in case the judge or jury doesn’t believe the defendant distributed or copied the material. That way, they could still obtain a conviction for sexual exploitation of a minor in the third degree.What Is the Punishment for Sexual Exploitation of a Minor in the Second Degree?
Second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor is a Class E felony. Additionally, anyone convicted of sexual exploitation of a minor in the second degree may be forced to register as a Sexually Violent Predator for the remainder of their life. Additionally, failure to register as a sex offender will likely result in the government pursuing additional felony charges against you.Are You Facing North Carolina Child Exploitation Charges?
If you’ve been accused of creating or distributing child pornography, it may be hard to imagine a more serious situation. And, while the charges you face are incredibly serious, there are also various defenses that may apply to your case. At the Olsinski Law Firm, PLLC, our attorneys are committed to providing you with the representation you need, deserve and are constitutionally entitled to. Despite the nature of the charges or the evidence against you, we will work closely with you to develop a strong defense strategy aimed at minimizing the impact your arrest will have on the rest of your life. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation with one of our Charlotte criminal defense lawyers, give us a call at 704-405-2580. You can also reach our Cabarrus County defense attorneys at 704-918-4747. We represent clients in Charlotte, Concord and Kannapolis, as well as throughout Mecklenburg, Gaston, Iredell, Rowan, and Union Counties.