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Possession or Promotion of Child Pornography

Possession or Promotion of Child Pornography

Chapter 43 of the Texas Penal Code defines charges and punishments for offenses of public indecency.

“Possession or Promotion of Child Pornography”, as per § 43.26 of the Texas Penal Code, occurs when a person knowingly or intentionally possesses, or knowingly or intentionally accesses with intent to view, visual material that visually depicts a child younger than 18 years of age at the time the image of the child was made who is engaging in sexual conduct, including a child who engages in sexual conduct as a victim of an offense under Section 20A.02(a)(5), (6), (7), or (8); and the person knows that the material depicts the child as described by Subdivision (1).

In this section:

  • "Promote" has the meaning assigned by Section 43.25.

  • "Sexual conduct" has the meaning assigned by Section 43.25.

  • "Visual material" means:

    • any film, photograph, videotape, negative, or slide or any photographic reproduction that contains or incorporates in any manner any film, photograph, videotape, negative, or slide;  or

    • any disk, diskette, or other physical medium that allows an image to be displayed on a computer or other video screen and any image transmitted to a computer or other video

An offense under this Subsection is a felony of the third degree, except that the offense is:

  • a felony of the second degree if it is shown on the trial of the offense that the person has been previously convicted one time of an offense under that subsection; and

  • felony of the first degree if it is shown on the trial of the offense that the person has been previously convicted two or more times of an offense under that subsection.

Additionally, a person commits an offense if:

  • the person knowingly or intentionally promotes or possesses with intent to promote material described by the previous Subsection; and

  • the person knows that the material depicts the child as described by the previous Subsection

An offense under this Subsection is a felony of the second degree, except that the offense is a felony of the first degree if it is shown on the trial of the offense that the person has been previously convicted of an offense under that subsection.

Severity of Crime

Third Degree Felony

  • Imprisonment in the institutional division for not more than 10 years or less than two years

  • In addition to imprisonment, may receive a fine not to exceed $10,000

Second Degree FelonY

  • Imprisonment in the institutional division for not more than 20 years or less than two years

  • In addition to imprisonment, may receive a fine not to exceed $10,000

First Degree Felony

  • Imprisonment in the institutional division for life, or

  • Imprisonment in the institutional division for not more than 99 years or less than five years with the exception of aggravated sexual assault, which adds a 25-year minimum punishment if the victim is younger than 6, or younger than 14 and the offense contained threats of serious bodily injury or death, or use of a deadly weapon

  • In addition to imprisonment, may receive a fine not to exceed $10,000