MUSKOGEE, Okla. — Selling images of an intimate partner without their consent will soon become a felony after the passage of Senate Bill 1492, according to a release from State Senator Kim David.
David authored the legislation in response to a constituent's plea for help regarding an ex-spouse who, despite multiple misdemeanor charges, continued selling intimate videos of the constituent to adult websites.
"Anyone with a moral compass would never think to stoop so low, but unfortunately we have some sick individuals in our society. They thrive off humiliating their current or former partners any way they can, and when they get paid to do it, it’s even more enticing,” David said. “My constituent’s ex-husband sold private videos of her to over 150 adult websites profiting from her humiliation and nearly costing her her job in the military. Even after having numerous misdemeanor charges brought against him, he continues selling the videos. This is disgusting, and we need to protect people from having their private moments used against them during or after a relationship.”
Those convicted for the first time could face up to four years in prison, while repeat offenders could face up to 10-year sentences. The law, which goes into effect Nov. 1, also requires that repeat offenders register as sex offenders.
Muskogee County District Attorney Orvil Loge said it was an appropriate response to an act that can destroy the lives of its victims. Having multiple years in prison as leverage should help deter those hoping to profit from intimate photos and videos without consent, he said.
"I believe that this crime should become a felony and should be more severely punished," Loge said. "The effect it has on victims is severe, and therefore the punishment of those that violate should be severe."
"Under SB 1462, attempting to gain financial advantage or gain anything of value as a result of the nonconsensual dissemination of private sexual images will become a felony," David's release states.
Loge approved of registering those caught selling intimate images as sex offenders, too, he said.
"I think it should be considered a sexual offense," Loge said. "I think the intent of the perpetrator originates in some sort of sexual interest, and that it should be a required reporting as a sex offender if convicted."