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Eye On Boise

Wed., Feb. 5, 2014, 3:27 p.m.

North Idaho lawmaker targets ‘revenge porn’ for felony charge

Rep. Luke Malek, R-Coeur d'Alene (Betsy Russell)
Rep. Luke Malek, R-Coeur d'Alene (Betsy Russell)

Idaho is moving to make "revenge porn" a felony, as the state's anti-video voyeurism law has proven unusable against this latest form of online crime. That's according to Rep. Luke Malek, R-Coeur d’Alene, who introduced his bill today. Times have changed since Idaho enacted the video voyeurism law, Malek says, which was aimed at people who surreptitiously filmed people in bathrooms or shot pictures up women’s skirts.

A particular problem is the current law's definition of the offense, which requires that the pictures or video be used for "sexual gratification." Today's revenge-porn offenders have other motives, Malek says, including posting explicit images of others on the internet for money, revenge, humiliation or shame.

Some get the images when they're privately shared earlier, perhaps by an ex; others get them through hacking, said Malek, a former deputy Kootenai County prosecutor. “It’s a wave of extortion, humiliation and revenge,” he said. “What people are doing is they’re taking photos that have been shared privately, and they’re posting them on the web, intending to get money out of them, to get revenge, or to flat-out humiliate them.” You can read my full story here at spokesman.com.




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Betsy Z. Russell
Betsy Z. Russell joined The Spokesman-Review in 1991. She currently is a reporter in the Boise Bureau covering Idaho state government and politics, and other news from Idaho's state capital.

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