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Man charged with sex crime for YouTube video

In a case that illustrates some of the problems with Internet sex crime prosecutions, 21- year old Evan Emory has been formally charged with manufacturing child sexually abusive material for making a video that features him singing a sexually explicit song to elementary students.

One of the problems with this case, however, is that the children in question were never exposed to such material. In fact, Emory sang the inoffensive song "Lunch Lady Land" while the children were present and then returned later to film the sexually explicit song alone. He then edited the two versions together on his computer to create the impression that the children were watching him perform the song with explicit lyrics as it appeared on YouTube.

Emory's attorney and supporters are arguing that, although what Emory did was in poor taste, creating an offensive comedy video is not illegal. According to Emory's attorney, the prosecution's request for 20 years in prison and mandatory registration on the sex offender's list is "way too drastic" for such a "vague" and "convoluted" charge.

Police searched Emory's home to find materials such as children's underwear, child pornography and souvenirs. According to Emory, they were searching for "horrible, horrible things." Police were unable to find any of the materials for which they were searching. Emory has issued an apology to the parents of the children featured in the video and admits bad judgment by editing the video to make it seem like he was using sexually explicit language in front of children.

Emory's attorney is seeking to avoid a jury trial and strike a deal with the prosecution for community service. The ACLU has contacted Nolan but, as of this time, he has not responded.

Source: WoodTV.com, "Emory lawyer: charge too drastic," 2/18/2011

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