Police call off plan to force teen to pose nude

View Caption Hide Caption
Genarlow Wilson, Morehouse Man (JOHNNY CRAWFORD / JCRAWFORD@AJC.COM)
Genarlow Wilson, Morehouse Man (JOHNNY CRAWFORD / JCRAWFORD@AJC.COM)

Genarlow Wilson went on to bigger and better things. (JOHNNY CRAWFORD / JCRAWFORD@AJC.COM)

UPDATE: Police have called off their plans to take sexually explicit photos of a 17-year-old in an effort to prove a sexting case against him.

The Associated Press reports police and prosecutors faced a wave of criticism following media reports that they had obtained a warrant to take photos of the teen’s erect penis. Police wanted the pictures to compare against photos he is accused of sending to his 15-year-old girlfriend at the time. On Thursday, Manassas Police Lt. Brian Larkin said the Police Department will not proceed with the plan to take the pictures and will let a search warrant authorizing the photos to expire.

Original column:

Some things could disappear forever and the world would be a better place.

Disease, war, hunger, poverty and child pornography would be high on my delete list.

The problem with eliminating the last one is that technology makes it easy for teens to make more child porn and the laws are written and enforced in troubling ways.

Those of you from ’round here probably remember Genarlow Wilson, an Atlanta teen who spent years behind bars for having consensual oral sex with his 15-year-old girlfriend on videotape. After Wilson’s case made headlines, Georgia law was changed to better separate sexually active teenagers from child molesters.

In Virginia, they may need a new law too. Police in Manassas City have issued a search warrant that calls for a 17-year-old teen to pose nude with an erection so police can take photos to be used as evidence against him in a child porn case.

The teen, who has not been identified, sent his 15-year-old girlfriend a video of his erection after she sent him photos.

The girl was not charged with any crime but the boy faces two felony charges for producing child porn. He could be jailed until 21 and forced to register as a sex offender for life.

The boy’s attorney said “I don’t mind trying the case. My goal is to stop the search warrant. I don’t want [the 17-year-old] to go through that. Taking him down to the hospital so he can get an erection in front of all those cops, that’s traumatizing.”

That’s a whole different kind of performance anxiety right there, but police are willing to help the lad out. If he is unable to perform, they will give him an “injection” to get the desired photographic result.

When police initially detained the teen they took photos of his genitals without his consent, his attorney says, but a photo of an erection is needed to use “special software” that can compare the penis in the photo to the one in the video sent to the girl.

A court-appointed guardian for the teen told The Washington Post she believes it is  just as illegal for the police to create their own child pornography as to investigate the teen for it.

“They’re using a statute that was designed to protect children from being exploited in a sexual manner,” said Flores Laboy, “to take a picture of this young man in a sexually explicit manner. The irony is incredible. As a parent myself, I was floored. It’s child abuse. We’re wasting thousands of dollars and resources and man hours on a sexting case. That’s what we’re doing.”

Let’s start with eliminating disease first.

More news gleaned from Wednesday’s Interwebs:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


View Comments 0