Texas Penal Code 21.15 – Invasive Visual Recording
WHAT IS INVASIVE VISUAL RECORDING IN TEXAS?
Invasive visual recording prohibits recording or photographing another’s “intimate area” without permission, if the intimate area is not subject to public view. The statute also prohibits recording or photographing others in a bathroom or changing room, in addition to transmitting any prohibited photograph or recording.
WHAT IS THE INVASIVE VISUAL RECORDING LAW IN TEXAS?
Tex. Penal Code § 21.15. INVASIVE VISUAL RECORDING.
(b) A person commits an offense if, without the other person’s consent and with intent to invade the privacy of the other person, the person:
(1) photographs or by videotape or other electronic means records, broadcasts, or transmits a visual image of an intimate area of another person if the other person has a reasonable expectation that the intimate area is not subject to public view;
(2) photographs or by videotape or other electronic means records, broadcasts, or transmits a visual image of another in a bathroom or changing room; or
(3) knowing the character and content of the photograph, recording, broadcast, or transmission, promotes a photograph, recording, broadcast, or transmission described by Subdivision (1) or (2).
(c) An offense under this section is a state jail felony.
(d) If conduct that constitutes an offense under this section also constitutes an offense under any other law, the actor may be prosecuted under this section or the other law.
(e) For purposes of Subsection (b)(2), a sign or signs posted indicating that the person is being photographed or that a visual image of the person is being recorded, broadcast, or transmitted is not sufficient to establish the person’s consent under that subdivision.
WHAT IS THE PENALTY CLASS FOR INVASIVE VISUAL RECORDING IN TEXAS?
Invasive visual recording is a state jail felony, punishable by 180 days to two years in a state jail facility.
WHAT IS THE PUNISHMENT RANGE FOR INVASIVE VISUAL RECORDING IN TEXAS?
The punishment range for invasive visual recording, a state jail felony, is 180 days to two years in a state jail facility, and a maximum fine of $10,000.
WHAT ARE THE PENALTIES FOR INVASIVE VISUAL RECORDING IN TEXAS?
As an alternative to state jail time, a person may be placed on probation after a conviction, or deferred adjudication to avoid a conviction, for a period between two and five years.
WHAT ARE THE DEFENSES TO INVASIVE VISUAL RECORDING IN TEXAS?
These types of cases are typically defended by asserting one’s First Amendment protection of free speech.
- When are photographs and video recordings protected by the First Amendment? Photographs and visual recordings are inherently expressive, so they are generally protected by the First Amendment. Sexual expression through photographs that might be indecent, but not obscene, are protected by the First Amendment if such expression is enjoyed solely within the confines of the home. The government may not regulate one’s mind. Rather, regulating obscene photographs and videos, such as laws against possessing child porn, may be regulated for the purpose of outlawing the evils of child exploitation.
- What if someone is exposing their “intimate areas” in public? The person being photographed or recorded must have a reasonable expectation that the intimate area is not subject to public view. This means, under most circumstances, that one’s body parts exposed to the public are subject to being legally photographed or recorded.
WHAT IS THE STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS FOR INVASIVE VISUAL RECORDING IN TEXAS?
The limitation period for invasive visual recording, a state jail felony, is three years.
INVASIVE VISUAL RECORDING IN TEXAS
The invasive visual recording statute protects people’s rights to personal seclusion, bodily integrity, and sexual privacy. The ubiquity of camera phones has forced lawmakers and courts to make a choice regarding photographing and video recording others: how far should it go?
- To what extent do people have a reasonable expectation of privacy in their intimate areas while they are out in public? There is always a chance of being photographed in public, despite most people not thinking about it. Taking photos and videos of people in public, of the areas of their bodies they have exposed to the public, is not unusual, suspicious, or criminal.
TEXAS INVASIVE VISUAL RECORDING COURT CASES
The case law regarding invasive visual recording in Texas analyzes the constitutionality of the statute and purported restrictions on free speech. Some conduct is very clearly not protected free speech.
- In Reed v. State, for example, a woman was browsing music and movies in a record store when she heard a camera shutter click behind her. The defendant, who had angled his camera phone under the woman’s skirt to take a photo, was ultimately convicted of invasive visual recording. On appeal, he argued the photo was blurry, so he should have been convicted of the lesser-included offense of attempted invasive visual recording. But the court of appeals affirmed the conviction, explaining the existence of a photograph, albeit a blurry one, shows the defendant completed the offense.
Glowing Client Reviews
Trey is the man! I hired him because I had overheard a county court judge mentioning how awesome of an attorney he is, so if an endorsement from a judge won’t convince you then I’m not sure what will. I sure do hope I never find myself in a pickle ever again but if I do, I would hire Trey in a heartbeat. He’s honest, transparent, doesn’t beat around the bush, and will work tirelessly so that your clean record stays clean and unblemished. 5 stars, highly recommend!
I recently hired Trey Porter Law to help our teenage daughter with a drug charge. In the state of Texas she was being charged as an adult which carried a much stiffer penalty. Trey is very responsive, helpful, knowledgeable and is always available to answer any questions or concerns via phone, text or email. He was able to negotiate on her behalf so it was a pleasant experience. I would highly recommend Trey Porter Law.
Trey really helped me out. He was straight forward and professional, and really helped me in my case. I thought i was going to lose my job, but trey did everything in his power to help me keep my way of life, and still keeps up with me any details on my case.
I really appreciated all he did for me.
Trey is a phenomenal attorney that gets the job done right! He is dedicated to help his clients.
He made himself available and answered all my concerns immediately! I had faith in him and he continued to prove his expertise by helping me. I highly recommend Trey Porter!!
Trey Porter fought for me! I am a nurse and thought my career was over.
Very thankful I got Trey Porter involved. He responds to messages regularly and was very thorough.
He saved my career. Forever grateful!
Mr Porter is the real deal. You get what you pay for these days. I know that from my personal business dealings. Attorney Trey Porter was no different.
He was prompt, professional and poised. I was charged with DWI, and Mr Porter got the charge dismissed. I could not be more pleased or thankful. If you get a DWI, hire the best — hire Trey Porter.
WE FIGHT FOR DISMISSAL
WE FIGHT FOR DISMISSAL
DRIVING WHILE INTOXICATED .15
Driving facts involved failing to maintain a single lane and speeding. Client refused breath test and forced law enforcement to obtain search warrant for blood. Blood test result was not used after challenge from Defense, and State waived and abandoned charge.
DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE
Client was a college student, worried about the collateral consequences of an alcohol offense. After negotiation and review of the traffic stop, the case was dismissed. Client received no criminal conviction. The charge was later expunged and deleted from client’s record.
DRIVING WHILE INTOXICATED .15+
Client was involved in minor accident. Client was at fault in accident. A young executive, client was concerned that a criminal conviction for DWI would result in termination. After review of the traffic stop, it was clear the officer lacked probable cause for arrest. State eventually dismissed DWI charge. Client received no criminal conviction.
Client, a military veteran, was facing up to one year in jail. State could not prove intoxication by alcohol, and was prepared to proceed on loss of use by marijuana. After challenging the State to prove that marijuana was ingested at or near time of driving, and that marijuana impaired client’s driving, the State dismissed the case on the day of trial.
DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE
Driving facts involved a false claim by police that taillight was out. After challenging the reasonable suspicion for the traffic stop, the State was forced to dismiss the case when video did not match police report. Client has since expunged arrest, and has no criminal record.
DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE
Client is a public school teacher and faced immediate termination upon conviction. The facts of the case were bad. State was unwilling to budge in negotiation, and matter was set for trial – the last shot at avoiding a conviction and preserving client’s livelihood. State was forced to dismiss on day of trial. Client has no criminal record, and has since expunged the DWI arrest.
Contact Trey Porter Today
Request a free consultation
The stakes are high. Criminal charges can have devastating, lifelong consequences. During the free, confidential consultation, Mr. Porter will answer questions surrounding your legal matter, and discuss and identify potential defenses.
If you have been arrested and charged with a crime, the State is working on your conviction. It’s time to start building your defense.