North Carolina laws regarding sending nude photos of minors is very strict. In fact, being convicted of merely having nude photos of minors on your phone can lead to you having to register as a sex offender. Interestingly, the laws regarding sexting don't take the age of the sender or recipient into account.
A recent case out of Cumberland County might have some people shaking their heads for two reasons. One reason is the fact that teens sent each other nude pictures. The other reason is the fact that the teens are now facing very serious criminal charges.
A high school quarterback, who is 16 years old, and his girlfriend, who is now 17 years old, are both facing five counts of sexual exploitation. The issue at hand is that both teens sent and received nude pictures of each other.
Because the teens are both minors, the charges are felony charges. Even though the two can legally consent to sexual intercourse since the age of consent in North Carolina is 16, the photos are still illegal under the state's laws.
The police found the nude pictures on the boy's phone while they were investigating another crime. Each nude photo that was stored on the phone can result in a charge. Each instance of sending a nude photo can result in another charge.
If they are found guilty, they will have to register as convicted sex offenders. That is a very scary prospect for teens. Anyone who is facing charges regarding sexting should begin working on a defense strategy right away. As you can see, the consequences of a conviction are harsh.
Source: NBC 12, "Two N.C. teens charged for sexting," Curt Autry, Sep. 10, 2015