Laws Pertaining to Sexting in the Commonwealth of Kentucky

The Commonwealth of Kentucky does not a have a specific statute Kentuckyfor sexting offenses. Anyone (including a minor) who creates, distributes or possesses an image of minor engaged in sexually explicit conduct may be prosecuted under the Commonwealth’s child pornography laws and if convicted, could receive jail time and will generally need to register as a sex offender.

Legislative Summary

n 2010, Kentucky proposed legislation to address sexting, however the bill failed and no new proposal has yet been made. Therefore, under Kentucky law, individuals, including minors, who are caught creating, distributing or possessing a sexually explicit image of a minor (including an image of themselves) could be charged with a felony under the Commonwealth’s child pornography statutes. If the minor is convicted they may receive jail time and will generally need to register as a sex offender.

Law and Punishment

In general, under Kentucky law it is a criminal offense to:

  • Knowingly use a communications system, including computers, cellular telephones, or any other electronic means, for the purpose of procuring or promoting the use of a minor in sexual activity.
    • If convicted, an offender could receive up to 5 years in jail.
  • Use a minor in a sexual performance.
    • If convicted, an offender could receive up to 20 years in jail if the subject is less than 16 years old and up to 10 years in jail if the subject is under 18 years of age.
  • Knowingly promote a sexual performance of a minor.
    • If convicted, an offender could receive up to 20 years in jail if the subject is less than 16 years old and up to 10 years in jail if the subject is under 18 years of age.
  • Distribute matter portraying a sexual performance of a minor.
    • If convicted, an offender could receive up to 5 years in jail.
  • Possess matter portraying a sexual performance by a minor.
    • If convicted, an offender could receive up to 5 years in jail.

If convicted, offenders will generally be required to register as a sex offender.

sobering reality

Charged with a felony.

Up to 20 years in jail.

Register as a sex offender.

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