Sexting Bill Advances in Legislature

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) –  A bill designed to address sexting among middle and high school students has advanced in the House.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that the chamber is expected to vote Wednesday on whether to send the bill to the Senate. It’s focused on 12- to 18-year-olds accused of transmitting images of a nude child.

Under existing state law, prosecutors were restricted to filing a felony that carries a sentence of up to 11 years in prison and lifetime registration as a sex offender.

The bill establishes three options for handling so-called “sexting” cases based on simple possession of the image, transmission of an image and aggravated transmission of the image.

Republican Rep. Blaine Finch, of Ottawa, says moderated sanctions provide an opportunity for counseling or mental health treatment outside of prison.