In New Jersey, every sexting complaint is reviewed for recommendations to be dismissed, diverted, or referred for court action based on several criteria. If they are diverted, they will participate in a remedial education or counseling program paid for by the juvenile’s parent or guardian. This program is designed to educate the teen on the potential consequences associated with sexting.
Section 18A:35-4.32 – Findings, declarations relative to “sexting.”
The Legislature finds and declares that:
a. The teenage practice of “sexting,” sending a sexually explicit text message, is a nationwide issue for students, parents, school administrators, and law enforcement officials.
b. What many teens do not realize is that, by law, a sexual image of any person under the age of 18 is child pornography. Prosecutors in several states have charged teenagers who have engaged in this behavior with criminal offenses, including distribution of child pornography.
c. Pursuant to a law which became effective in April, 2012, the New Jersey Legislature provided for a diversionary program for juveniles who are criminally charged for “sexting” or posting sexual images and permits them to participate in a remedial education or counseling program as an alternative to criminal prosecution.
d. Beyond the legal consequences of this behavior, however, sexting also has significant non-legal consequences including, but not limited to, the effect on relationships, loss of educational and employment opportunities, and being barred or removed from school programs and extracurricular activities.
e. Because of the unique characteristics of cyberspace and the Internet, a single sext has the potential to cause long-term and possibly unforeseen consequences, and result in severe embarrassment, ridicule, cyber-bullying, and lasting mental and emotional trauma.
f. It is imperative that students understand at a young age the severity of sending sexually explicit text messages and the impact that these actions have on the students themselves, their victims, and the community and that they receive instruction on how and why to refrain from this very dangerous behavior.
Revenge porn in New Jersey could fall under 2C:14-9. Invasion of privacy: “An actor commits a crime of the third degree if, knowing that he is not licensed or privileged to do so, he discloses any photograph, film, videotape, recording or any other reproduction of the image of another person whose intimate parts are exposed or who is engaged in an act of sexual penetration or sexual contact, unless that person has consented to such disclosure. For purposes of this subsection, “disclose” means sell, manufacture, give, provide, lend, trade, mail, deliver, transfer, publish, distribute, circulate, disseminate, present, exhibit, advertise or offer. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection b. of N.J.S.2C:43-3, a fine not to exceed $30,000 may be imposed for a violation of this subsection.”