Juvenile Sex Crimes in Virginia…
WTDW Podcast | Episode 3: What To Do When.. Juvenile Sex Crimes.
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WTDW Podcast | Episode 3: What To Do When.. Juvenile Sex Crimes.
Welcome to What To Do When….A podcast from real lawyers with real perspective, where we explore a variety of legal issues and scenarios. Each week we focus on a new topic and discuss What to do When, and if any of these legal scenarios ever happened to you or a loved one. With over 40 years of combined legal experience, our hosts offer their unique perspectives and insights on a range of real life legal situations.
Jackie Critzer 0:52
Hey, guys, welcome back to What To Do When.. a podcast from Critzer Cardani. I’m Jackie, and this is Scott. And this is part of our legal first aid for parents or
Scott Cardani 1:08
A Guide to the legal verse.
Jackie Critzer 1:10
dummies guide, the legal verse. That’s right, the dummies guide to the legal verse. So in one of our other episodes, we mentioned juvenile criminal defense and then sort of left a cliffhanger for juvenile sex crimes. And, Scott, have you had much experience in in that and what does that even mean?
Scott Cardani 1:29
This is a really big deal that most parents don’t think is a big deal. And this is something that can mess a kid up for life. And you know, I have children, you have children, we’ve raised our you know, some of us are in the process, I have a 20 year old and a 17 year old and all in between. So my point is this, this is so important that you start to teach your kids there’s such a thing out there now that everything’s kind of almost we’re kind of reverting back to the 70s and free love. And it’s all good. And sure. And it’s all good, as long as everybody’s all good. But as soon as one person in that all good situation decides it’s not all good anymore. It spirals quick.
Jackie Critzer 2:14
So what do you do when a parent calls you and says they have their daughter’s phone and the boyfriend, the neighbor that some male at the school has sent what they commonly referred to as a dick pic. What do you what, what happens? Do they call the police? Is the boy in trouble? Is the girl in trouble? What’s that scenario unfold like?
Scott Cardani 2:32
Well, here’s the the truth of the matter is that let me go there. I don’t know how I explained quite departs this. But I want to start with this. A juvenile sending a picture of a juvenile or getting a picture of a juvenile is child porn, even if it’s themselves even if it’s themselves. So you got to understand that never thinks it’s no big deal on a lot of schools, we’ve heard about things like they’re sending out pictures of their naked girlfriend and guys are writing them or same thing with boyfriends and things like that. And exchange of all these Yeah, or they’re downloading their sexual epithets to the air, dropping them to the school and all those kinds of things. And you know, it’s interesting, sometimes it doesn’t even matter where it began, or matters what you did with it. So say you got a video that was downloaded from 30 people, and you’re watching it in your house, you are in possession of child porn, even if it’s your best friend’s girlfriend, and they’re all 15 years old. And you’re 15 Guess what, it doesn’t matter. The person holding the age doesn’t matter. It matters what’s in the video.
Jackie Critzer 3:42
So receiving, what I mean, there’s so many avenues to go what do you tell your teenager to do when they accidentally or on purpose, download a video but then find out that it’s got
Scott Cardani 3:56
I think this is really comes down to when you hand them that phone, it is so important to explain this to him and sit down and say, Look, you’re getting a lot of responsibility, there’s gonna be a lot opportunities, and you got to explain to him, these things are crimes. And I understand a lot of you might be sitting there going like, well, that’s never gonna happen. And we understand that 85% of kids are doing this and not getting caught. Fair enough. You know, I understand that. But do you want to be the one? And Mike said, say your kids in a very consensual relationship and you’re all about it, and they’re up in your house and you’re letting them use the bedroom to do whatever the heck they want. Guess what, what if the one of the parties decides they weren’t into it? And they go home and say, Hey, Mom, I was forced to do this or I was forced to do that or I didn’t feel comfortable doing this or I felt pressure to do this. We’re getting into those things. Now. We’re getting into you know, I didn’t feel comfortable
Jackie Critzer 4:59
not to mention any If there’s alcohol or some other substance involved that your parent knew about, and, but,
Scott Cardani 5:05
or even if you don’t know about it, but I’m just saying that for the parents who do know about it, all it takes is that one party in that relationship to break rank, and all of a sudden it becomes was their sexual battery was there an assault was there rape was there all kinds of things. Because maybe somebody’s feelings are hurt. And And again, in our current age, what we’re seeing is this start to be more of a widespread issue, because let’s face it, parents when we are kids, if we’re in the backseat with our girlfriend, and we’re making out and we decided to go to first base, and she smacks you in the face and says, Not there, and not tonight, kind of that really ended it. Now, if your son’s in the car with his girlfriend, he goes to first base, and she doesn’t like it, you may get a police report, that sexual battery, you touched a sexual organ, and you’ve just battery is touching, unwanted touching, it’s nothing more than that people think it has to be a hit or a punch. It’s just unwanted touching. So all of a sudden, you know, what we deemed is fairly normal and innocent part of growing up and that give and take. But that goes again, I really believe this. And some people, Brian and I like to hear this. But as a parent, it’s our job to equip our children even to say no, and to say they’re in their situations, if they’re not comfortable to have this strength of character sometimes, and it’s hard to say, You know what, we’re not doing that. And to get out of the car and call you and say, Hey, I’m walking down. Knuckles road right now, come get me. Sure. It’s all it takes. And now that I’ve always told my kids, you can always call me and always use me as an excuse. You know, I’m not comfortable with my dad to kill me. That’s okay with me, because I will kill you. You’re not lie. So you know, all those things. We have to prepare children before so many people send their daughters out or sons out for their first date and give them nothing,
Jackie Critzer 6:55
Scott Cardani 6:56
no tools, and you have to have the tools to say no. Women need to be empowered with the idea that they can say no, you know, but also you’re not always a victim. You know,
Jackie Critzer 7:08
there are two sides to that story. And same for the for the men, that they just said something so on point, you’re not always a victim, you have a voice to say no, you have most of the time control over the situation, to not put yourself in a situation where maybe something’s gonna get carried further than it really ought to, that you want it to. That’s not everyone. Of course, there are situations where you don’t have control, and you’re absolutely the victim, but not everyone’s a victim.
Scott Cardani 7:40
And the idea is to try to educate your kids, so they not a victim. Sure, if they are they are and they need to, you know, we’ll you know, we can help in that, you know, help you walk through that process and things like that. We’re not blaming people we’re trying to say is, as parents, we got to educate them in this big sexual universe that’s out there, that there seems to be no rules right now. And there’s not common sense anymore, and those kind of thing. So, you know, I told my boys all the time, if you get in the backseat with a girl, you are putting your future at risk period. I don’t care how consensual it is, at the beginning, I don’t care anything about that, because you don’t know how it’s gonna go. And at that moment, you may be considered the aggressor or not the girl doesn’t matter. We hear it all the time. And, you know, we have to, you know, it’s almost like today’s and universe, you have to have a signed contract between the two of them before you kiss. And if you don’t, then anything is okay.
Jackie Critzer 8:39
So what happens to a girl? Let’s say she’s a this teen girl, just as I’m just taking pictures, and maybe she sends it to a handful of people. What’s her culpability? What, what could come with her?
Scott Cardani 8:54
She just produced and distributed child porn, period?
Jackie Critzer 8:58
And because that sounds really scary, are we talking about felony charges, misdemeanor charges?
Scott Cardani 9:05
Well, again, it’d be a felony, if committed by an adult, it’s a vessel, definitely a very serious charge that raised the ire of everybody. And you know, the police can just go on Snapchat and recover those pictures fairly easy. And all of a sudden, you have these images. And I’ll tell you, we see this all the time. You know, we see the second person get the images that somebody say your daughter sends Johnny nude pics of herself and Johnny has an iPhone, they’re dating. He’s in possession of child porn, right? You know, everybody thinks, oh, you know, it’s not a big deal. Well, it is a big deal. And it can be a really big deal, depending on how it goes out. And then all sudden, Susie says, Well, I don’t like Johnny, and I don’t want him to have that picture of me. How’s that go down? He stole that picture of me. I didn’t give it to him. He took it and I didn’t know he took it, whatever it may be. Right, you know, and let’s face it, people aren’t honest in those situations, on both ways, and we’re getting into all kinds of crazy stuff now with things And who’s, who’s who, and what’s what and how it all plays out is is a crazy, crazy world. And we have to educate our kids with tools and say, Look, if you have new pictures on your phone, that’s a problem.
Jackie Critzer 10:14
Well, and so, so let’s say somebody is found a teenager is found to have nude pictures of sexual body parts of anyone, another man, a female, anyone? And then ultimately, they’re convicted of having possession of this child pornography. Is that a situation where they’re on the sex offenders less list? And if so, how long and
Scott Cardani 10:36
see, that’s all kind of the stuff that starts to get wrapped around. Normally, if we’re involved, and it’s kind of a first thing, we can keep them from a lot of that trouble. But there are sexual registers there are people get put on, can you imagine your kid having a sexual registry, cresc, wherever they’re at a certain age, they can be treated as an adult, to crime serious enough and all those kinds of things. So again, without getting into the minutiae, I don’t wanna get too deep in the mud. I want to keep this kind of service surface for the parents. But you’ve got to start thinking about that. Can you imagine your kid at 16 being registered as a sex offender? Because he didn’t understand that no means no. Or, you know, his girlfriend decided that him sleeping with somebody else wasn’t okay. And all sudden, she charges him with rape. And he’s, you know, what he thought was a great thing in his face that our kids aren’t smart about these things. They don’t know. We don’t come just like parents don’t come with a toolbox and a manual and a guide do this and that kids don’t either.
Jackie Critzer 11:40
Scott does it? Does it make a big difference in court, in your experience? If there are substances involved, whether it’s marijuana alcohol at a party, you know, let’s say a guy kisses a girl unwanted? It’s still battery, by your definition of an earlier, are those extra facts playing a part?
Scott Cardani 12:00
Yeah, and this is a big one. You know, again, sometimes as parents, you know, we may know or may not know they’re going to a party. And, you know, are they going to drink at that party, or somebody is having a party probably to get high in some capacity. So you got to be really careful about that stuff. So to people who are high or drunk or whatever you want to call it, you’re not in your normal state, your inhibitions are lowered, you’re, you’re all these things. So you know, a simple makeout session with a drunk person become a battery, because that person when they wake up, go, I didn’t really consent to that. Or we have the blackout stuff, which nobody likes and everybody hates, but it really needs to be covered. If two people are so trashed, and they sleep together, or even make out or whatever it is, and they touch body parts, or whatever it may be. And that one of those people wake up in the morning and don’t remember it. They’re gonna think, Hey, I was raped last night, or I was battered last night and somebody took advantage of me sexually. They may have been the whole time alert appearing, or they just don’t remember it. They could have been encouraging the whole thing, all those kinds of things, but man, do you want to go into a he said, she said in that case with your child. You know, again, I tell my kids all the time, have somebody around you don’t be by yourself. Don’t isolate. It’s things that kids naturally want to do. They want to sneak off in the woods with their girlfriend and they want to do these things and I get it. I understand I was a kid once but I also understand the world we live in now.
Jackie Critzer 13:35
Well, part of our whole purpose in this Parent’s Guide to legal verse. The parents first aid kit really is to help empower parents, to prevent their kids from having to use us. We’re here we are good at our job. We enjoy our job. We’ve We’ve learned a lot as we’ve moved through the legal verse. But if you can empower your children to avoid having to see an attorney, that’s the best first step you can take.
Scott Cardani 14:02
Right? I’ll leave it at that couldn’t be better said very good.
Jackie Critzer 14:05
Tune into our next episode about social services and when and how they get involved with juvenile criminal defense.
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