Colorado Law Makes It Tough to Prosecute Child Pornography Cases
In Larimer County alone, around 40 child pornography cases go through the District Attorney's office each year.
Unfortunately, an outdated Colorado law is making it difficult to prosecute them.
According to 9News, the current law does not take into account the role that advanced technology plays in child porn.
The law "Hasn't really been updated in probably 15 years," said Brian Hardouin, a prosecutor at the Larimer County District Attorney's Office. "That was to just update the language to show movies are no longer on VHS tapes."
Streaming, webcams, and other modern technologies are not specified in the law, which makes it hard to prove possession.
Because of this, prosecutors have been making plea deals with criminals that don't measure up to the crime itself in order to avoid having a jury let the accused go free due to a lack of proof.
State Representative Dylan Roberts (D-Avon) is aware of prosecutors' plights and is working to improve the law.
Roberts is crafting a new bill that would include live streaming, cloud data, and other technology in child pornography cases.
It would also help rural law enforcement agencies with technical analysis.
On top of that, the bill would mandate a subcharge for those convicted of child crimes. The money would go towards resources that would aid in child porn investigations.
However, Hardouin is afraid the new bill could harm innocent people, particularly teenagers who send consensual pictures to each other.
Roberts contends that the bill is clearly written and would not affect such situations.
The bill will be debated next Tuesday (Feb. 4).