Prosecutors Charge 14-Year-Old Girl As Sex Offender For Nude Selfie

Rice County Attorney John Fossum is charging the girl with felonies for victimizing herself.

Minneapolis, MN - A 14-year-old girl has been charged with a felony after she sent sexually explicit photos of herself to a classmate through Snapchat.

The suspect said that she is not a criminal, according to CBS Minnesota.

“Sexting is common among teens at my school, and we shouldn’t face charges for doing it. I don’t want anyone else to go through what I’m going through,” the 14-year-old girl said in a statement released by the Minnesota chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota (ACLU-MN).

Police became aware of the explicit photo after the boy she sent it to started showing it around to his classmates, according to the New York Daily News.

ACLU-MN said they are in support of the 14-year-old girl, identified only as Jane Doe, and believe prosecutors are not taking into account the intent of the state’s child pornography statute.

They recently filed a brief to challenge the Rice County prosecutor's decision to charge Jane Doe with dissemination of child porn.

In its brief, the ACLU-MN said “[Name of girl redacted] cannot criminally ‘use’ or ‘victimize’ herself. In fact, the child pornography statute does not even attempt to address the phenomenon widely known as ‘sexting.’”

“No reasonable kid would realize that what she is doing is wrong and that what she is doing is a felony and so that’s another reason that the court should not allow this prosecution to go forward,” ACLU-MN legal director Teresa Nelson said.

“What my daughter went through at school with the other students was really rough,” her father said, “and when we found out she was also facing criminal charges my first thought was, ‘Why are we victimizing the victim?’”

The ACLU-MN said that the laws exist to prosecute people who endanger or victimize juveniles.

“To suggest that a juvenile who sends a sexually explicit selfie is a victim of her own act of child pornography is illogical,” Nelson said. “Child pornography laws are supposed to protect minors from predators, and Jane Doe is not a predator.”

Rice County Attorney John Fossum confirmed to Minnesota Public Radio that he signed off on the charges.

According to the ACLU-MN, the girl would be forced to register as a predatory sex offender for the next 10 years if she’s found guilty.

Do you think that juveniles should be criminally charged for taking nude photos of themselves? We'd like to hear from you. Please let us know in the comments.

No the kid should not be charged but rather educated. This is not like some adult talked the kid into taking the photos of herself and then sending them to other adults, it's stupid kids doing stupid stuff. This zero tolerance nonsense has to stop.

Yes, the girl SHOULD be charged, but not as a sexual predator! She DID forward child porn/sexual explicit material to other children, so she is legally responsible! She sounds pretty stupid/ignorant and shouldn't have this hang over her head all her life! Her parents must be idiots to have let this happen!

Always love when my town is featured nationwide! This is a dumb case. The people who passed on the photo should be the ones who get charged. A "Predatory" sex offender? Fossum is just dumb signing off on this one.

Rice County Attorney John Fossum, An opossum at law.

@Poileas Prove's he is the dumb to the bone. ACLU is defending the constitutional right of a citizen, Just like it has defended other people you disagree with.

Excuse me, but if you are going to give a 14 year old a phone with a camera and have not, to that point, explained to her, that EXPOSING her naked body is A CRIME, then not only should the 14 year old be prosecuted but also the people who GAVE HER THE PHONE. You mean this 14 year old has never been told not to show her hoo-haw or titties to anyone but her physician? What if this were a 14 year old boy who was sending photos of his dick via the internet? Would all of you be calling HIM a victim? Hell no! Oh, and by the way, WHAT KIND OF SLUT are these people raising that thinks it's ok to show even ONE boy her naked body? YES PROSECUTE HER, MAKE HER REGISTER AS A SEXUAL PREDATOR - because that is what she is. She'll be knocked up by 15 and expecting me to support her brat.

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Damn, some of you are cold. This is a child who took a picture of herself and is facing a harsher sentences than violent criminals.

I need more information on the victim, how the elements of the crime related to the victim. How the victim will testify in court to being harmed or being injured and how the suspect will offer a defense saying the victim permitted them to do so.

You have a victim and defendant who are going to be playing cards sitting on both sides the table, one on the prosecutors and the suspects, defense. How will that fare? How will each the prosecutor and defense cross-examine the victim and defendant if called to the stand?

Both sides have to have access to the person being how she is the alleged victim and suspect.

What is missing from the article, is the social class, race, and type of education facility.

Are we talking about low to lower-middle-class families, middle to upper, middle-class or your upper-class families?

The race shouldn't be essential, but it is; because it speaks to social issues and the dated climates which different values may shift due to public pressures. Standards forced into families and onto children without choice, in other words, people of all races whether they are part of the protests or not, on either side of the street; get shit on.

Is the education facility a public school? Is it in the top performing ranking among institutions in its district? What is the oversight policy for the pupils with guidance counselors? Is it a private school? If so who operates it? What are their transparency policies?
*Is the education facility a faith-based operation? If so what exactly are they teaching their pupils for the tuition to result in this behavior?

So how did the elements of this crime fit the charges, the accused is claimed to offend the victim by committing?

The prosecutor will make the example that the victim is the state and all those who utilize the services which could get exposed to the image(s) the youth uploaded or shared to individuals. Still, if you go looking are you a victim or a suspect? The primary question we should be asking is should we be branding a 14 year for the rest of her life.

Oh yeah, I agree, throw the book at her. If any adult ends up with these photos on their computer through no fault of their own. They would be charged with a felony of posession of child porn. She chose to do the crime so lock her up.

All I see is a bunch of adults with a kid in a courtroom...this is what we have all those overpaid politicians for? This is what this prosecutor chooses to do with his time?

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