MADISON, Wis. -- The Wisconsin Assembly approved a bill that would make it a crime to solicit nude or sexually explicit photos from a child.
The bill states that any adult that attempts to solicit a child to provide them with sexually explicit photos would be guilty of a Felony Class I; punishable by a fine not to exceed $10,000, imprisonment not to exceed three years and six months, or both.
Adults between the ages of 18 and 21 who attempt to solicit sexually explicit photos from children that are no more than three years younger than they, would be guilty of a Misdemeanor A; punishable by a fine not to exceed $10,000, imprisonment not to exceed nine months, or both.
Rep. Romaine Quinn (R-Rice Lake) voted in favor of the bill and stated to DrydenWire.com that he was "astounded" to learn that there was no current penalty in place for this under Wisconsin law. Rep. Quinn also said that this bill will "give our prosecutors the tools necessary to go after predators who seek to harm our children".
Rep. Nick Milroy (D-South Range) also voted in favor of the bill and stated to DrydenWire.com that it’s important "that we protect children from sexual predators". Rep. Milroy said that this bill "closes a loophole and creates a penalty for soliciting a sexually explicit photograph of a minor. It also has a 'Romeo & Juliet' provision that reduces the penalty for solicitors within 3 years of age of the victim."
Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
This bill creates a crime for soliciting a sexually explicit photograph, recording, or other representation from a person who is under the age of 18. Under the bill, if a person who is over the age of 18 solicits such a representation from a person who he or she believes is under the age of 18, he or she is guilty of a Class A misdemeanor. Under current law, there is no penalty for soliciting such a representation from a minor.
The Assembly passed the bill by way of a voice vote and will now be sent to the Wisconsin Senate for approval.