Public Comments for: HB1150 - Commercial sex trafficking, prostitution, etc.; mistake of age defense.
Last Name: Johnson Locality: James City County

I do not support any bills that criminalize folks

Last Name: Bendtsen Organization: Shared Hope International Locality: Washington D.C.

Comments Document

Written testimony on HB 1150 ahead of February 2, 2022 subcommittee hearing.

Last Name: Jones Locality: Midlothian, Virginia

The court already disallows mistake of age defenses. While I typically recommend codifying important aspects of the criminal justice system such as this it would greatly disrupt our criminal justice system. There are several places in our code where this is implicated such as the provision of alcohol to a minor. Unless we changed all of those subsections there is a possibility that a judge may assume that mistake of age defenses are allowed in such cases. It is my recommendation that this bill be passed by indefinitely.

Last Name: McCoy Organization: Amara Legal Center; Virginia Coalition Against Human Trafficking Locality: Arlington
Last Name: Burkhardt Locality: Springfield

This bill is inconsistent with the spirit and intent of similar statutes, namely 18.2-374.3, Use of communications systems to facilitate certain offenses involving children. Statutes should be updated to use similar wording prohibiting solicitation of a person or child “WHOM he knows or has reason to believe is <underage> …” The omission of the word “WHOM” in 18.2-374.3 has led to misinterpretation of the law, allowing prosecution for soliciting an imaginary child and for soliciting adults who assume another child’s identity and impersonate them. The intent of the law is to protect real children, not impersonators, imaginary children, or blow-up dolls.

End of Comments