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Woman Ticketed For Nude Pics On Internet 768

Posted by timothy
from the use-undisclosed-location dept.
Oneamp writes "A woman in Lincoln, Neb. has been ticketed for appearing nude in public after she published photographs of herself doing so. Apparently, it's not neccessary to be caught in the act. CNN article here" The article does not link to Harrington's website.
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Woman Ticketed For Nude Pics On Internet

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  • by r_glen (679664) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:19PM (#7848945)
    Darn [melissalincoln.com]. (NOT SAFE FOR WORK!)

    :)
  • by peeping_Thomist (66678) * on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:20PM (#7848949)
    She's doing something that's illegal where she lives, and she's posting to the
    Internet photos of herself doing it. She's providing them with the EVIDENCE
    they need to convict her.

    This is a no-brainer.
  • I was (Score:5, Funny)

    by bigjocker (113512) * on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:20PM (#7848951) Homepage
    Ticketed just for looking at said pictures ...

    Of course, the ticket was from my wife, not the police
  • by dukerobillard (582741) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:22PM (#7848969)
    When you get a ticket mailed to you because you were caught speeding or running a light by one of those cameras in intersections, no body "caught you in the act" then, either, right?
  • Non-News. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by big_groo (237634) <groovis&gmail,com> on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:22PM (#7848971) Homepage
    The owner of the bar, Jerry Luth, told Omaha television station KETV he is extremely upset by the pictures and did not give Harrington permission to shoot the pictures at the bar.

    What's the problem here? Get permission next time. If she did have permission, we wouldn't be posting here, would we?

  • Not too strange... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by jea6 (117959) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:22PM (#7848972)
    It's never necessary to be "caught in the act" to be prosecuted for a crime so, while the details of this case are modestly noteworthy, she did commit a crime and provide evidence to that effect. That the alleged "crime" is stupid and law sounds unconstitutional is something else entirely.
    • by pudge (3605) * <slashdot@[ ]ge.net ['pud' in gap]> on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:42PM (#7849130) Homepage Journal
      You honestly think a law prohibiting public nudity sounds unconstitutional? How many Froot Loops box tops did you collect to get your law degree?
      • by js7a (579872) * <james@@@bovik...org> on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @09:23PM (#7850514) Homepage Journal
        Laws prohibiting public nudity are frequently ruled unconstitutional as soon as some D.A. tries to enforce them, e.g. this case allowing erotic dancing in Virginia [state.va.us].

        The determination is in the details. Ms. "Lincoln" is charged with a violation of Lincoln Municipal Code Section 9.16.230, which reads: [lincoln.ne.us]

        9.16.230 Public Nudity; Unlawful.

        (a) It shall be unlawful for a person to, knowingly or intentionally, in a public place or in any place open to the public, appear in a state of nudity.

        (b) 'Nudity' means the showing of the human male or female genitals or pubic area with less than a fully opaque covering, the showing of the female breast with less than a fully opaque covering on any part of the areola and nipple, or the showing of covered male genitals in a discernibly turgid state.

        (c) This section shall not apply to:
        (1) Any theater, concert hall, art center, museum, or similar establishment which is primarily devoted to the arts or theatrical performances and in which any of the circumstances contained in this section were permitted or allowed as part of such art exhibit or performance;
        (2) Any dressing/changing room or restroom facility open to the public;
        (3) Any person under twelve years of age; or
        (4) Mothers who are breast feeding.

        So, given part (c), she probably doesn't have the selective enforcement hook that the linked Virginia case turned on, other than the male/female topless selectivity thing that worked in Canada last year.

        However, the government, if faced with an unconstitutionality claim, will have to state exactly what the compelling interest of the law is, and almost certainly it will be the same common law opposition to public nudity that is supposed to prevent people from being "shocked and offended." (Or driven mad with lacivious rage, or whatever.)

        Now, for a conviction of a crime of intent (i.e., other than some kind of neglegence), scienter or "malice aforethought" must be proven. The defense in this case will almost certainly be able to prove an absence of malice, unless the procecution can produce a member of the public that observed the conduct depicted in the photographs and swears under penalty of purjury that they were shocked and/or offended. (With those breasts, I'm guessing you'd want a male for shocked and a female for offended.) The prosecution must also prove that the suspect was aware of the witness, or at least of the possibility of the witness's presence. The defense can counter with the likely fact, likely supported by witnesses, that (1) the indoor flashing was for a very brief period of time, and (2) the outdoor flashing was during a private party from which witnesses were being excluded.

        In short, the prosecution has to prove, at the "beyond a reasonable doubt" level, that she was reckless about whether someone would be offended, which is not going to be easy.

  • by blunte (183182) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:23PM (#7848975)
    This kind of "exposure" can only help her site and her income.

    Getting busted over something minor isn't the point.

    Now if she was really cool she'd get someone to take some naughty shots of her in the police station.
  • by politicalman (692933) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:23PM (#7848980)
    HHHHmmmmm.....
  • by larry2k (592744) <larry2k@mac.com> on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:24PM (#7848984) Homepage
    From the note: "They're not going to stop me from doing what I'm doing. I enjoy what I do and they really don't have any grounds now"

    That's what i call "The Pr()n spirit"

  • by The Creator (4611) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:24PM (#7848985) Homepage Journal
    In Iran?
    • by ender81b (520454) <billdNO@SPAMinebraska.com> on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @06:01PM (#7849307) Homepage Journal
      As a lincolnite I resent that.

      We are most definately right next to nowhere, a little south of boringville.

      I hate this town.
    • by MadAnthony02 (626886) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @06:30PM (#7849513) Homepage

      While I certainly feel people should be able to look at whatever they want in the privacy of their own home, I don't think I'd go as far as to argue that public nudity should be legal - if only because there is a large percentage of the population that I have no desire to see naked.

      • Well i don't want to read your stupid posts, but is that a reason to ban freedom of speach?

      • by Kjella (173770) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @11:55PM (#7851106) Homepage
        While I certainly feel people should be able to look at whatever they want in the privacy of their own home, I don't think I'd go as far as to argue that public nudity should be legal - if only because there is a large percentage of the population that I have no desire to see naked.

        The point is voluntarism. You wouldn't want that people could watch other people forced to, or incapable of understanding their acts, such as images of rape or kiddie pr0n. Much in the same way that you don't want people (like you in particular) or people not mature enough, such as minors, to be forced to observe such acts.

        However, in the case of public nudity it's slightly more complicated - it is after all how we are without garments, and it's not a negative "you can not do X" To disallow public nudity is to force people to wear clothes. At which point you have to argue which freedom is more important - the freedom not to wear clothes, or the freedom not to see other people without clothes.

        While I agree - I wouldn't like to see most of the population naked - I find their right to decide over their own body, to be naked if they so please more basic than my right to decide what I want to see. Or even what my future kids someday will see. I admit, I wouldn't want them to see a flasher like this. But a naked guy walking down the street? Acceptable to me.

        That does not extend to events they could reasonably keep private, or where the entire point is do to it in public (like e.g. having public sex), but nudity is not an action - it's rather an absence of an action - to wear clothes. Ask yourself - do you have the right to force everyone around you to wear clothes?

        Kjella
  • Keep in mind.... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by malibucreek (253318) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:24PM (#7848992) Homepage
    The key legal point here is that the Web posting appears to be *the evidence* that she appeared in public nude, in violation of Lincoln's backward, boring, typically lame Nebraskan ordinance.

    The posting itself is not necessarily the violation. If she posted a nude picture *taken in her home* it is not clear from this article that she ever would have been charged.
  • fakes? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by mod_parent_down (692943) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:25PM (#7848997)
    Considering today's technology, photographs should never be admissable as evidence unless the source can verified and possibility of tampering is eliminated...

    They're easier to fake than lie detectors.

    • Re:fakes? (Score:5, Funny)

      by pclminion (145572) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:34PM (#7849062)
      Considering today's technology, photographs should never be admissable as evidence unless the source can verified and possibility of tampering is eliminated...

      Ah yes, I see, the Lincoln City Council has taken upon itself to surreptitiously photograph its citizens, then edit the photographs to make them appear as if they are violating ordinances in order to collect citation income from them.

      Tell me, do you have the aluminum foil hat, or did you get the spiffy titanium one?

    • Re:fakes? (Score:3, Insightful)

      by pudge (3605) *
      Considering today's technology, photographs should never be admissable as evidence unless the source can verified and possibility of tampering is eliminated...

      Since the photo came from her, and it is her web site that admits they were taken in the bar in question ... this really isn't an issue, in this case. Really.
  • Smoking gun (Score:5, Informative)

    by Rkane (465411) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:25PM (#7848999) Homepage Journal
    The smoking gun [thesmokinggun.com] also has an article [thesmokinggun.com] on this, and shows the offending pictures (blurred, so they are work safe).
  • by Total_Wimp (564548) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:31PM (#7849036)
    If nobody saw her when the picture was taken then she wasn't nude in "public". The analogy would be if woman changed into her swimsuit on the beach while others were holding a big towel in the way. Since no one saw her naked body there was no "public" involved even though she was briefly not wearing clothing in what would otherwise be considered a public space.

    In most of these voyeur-style pictures the shot is taken when no one is looking. I am definitely not a lawyer, but if I were defending myself on this I'd argue that since nobody saw me (assuming this is the case) it wasn't a "public" display.

    TW
    • If nobody saw her when the picture was taken then she wasn't nude in "public".

      This is not a legal argument you are making, but a "what I think it should be" argument, and those don't usually hold up so well in court.

      if I were defending myself on this I'd argue that since nobody saw me (assuming this is the case) it wasn't a "public" display.

      And the judge would laugh at you. :-)

      Laws are usually quite specific about what their terms mean; some less so than others, but "public" is very clear in law.

      I found one Nebraska public decency law [geocities.com], for example, that says "in a public place and where the conduct may reasonably be expected to be viewed by members of the public". Whether or not someone saw anything is irrelevant, in this law: it only matters whether the act might reasonably be expected to be seen by members of the public.

      So, if it is a private party in a public place, not a problem. If it is during public business hours at a table in the local pub, that's a problem. The law she was cited for is not this one, but it is likely the wording is similar, as most of them are.
  • by dorlthed (700641) <mxc511 AT psu DOT edu> on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:32PM (#7849044)

    How did the police find the pictures?

    Hmm . . . it's also unlawful to use government property to surf porn sites at work, you know . . . :p

    • by icenine4u (577037) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:43PM (#7849141)
      "It's unlawful to be naked in public in Lincoln," said Police Chief Tom Casady. Casady said it was obvious to him that the photos were taken inside the Marz Intergalactic Shrimp and Martini Bar. ...so we at least know that when the Chief of Police is not surfing for porn, he is hanging out at the local bar.
    • by Artifakt (700173) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:54PM (#7849239)
      Law enforcement, in the line of duty, is not restricted by that government policy. There is a specific exemption written right into the code to cover such cases. Even posting a disclaimer on a site that says clicking on the "I Accept" button means you have declared you are not Law enforcement doesn't have any legal validity at all.
  • by healy (234314) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:37PM (#7849083) Homepage
    I only read slashdot for the "articles".
  • Umm guys (Score:4, Insightful)

    by cybermace5 (446439) <g.ryan@macetech.com> on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:41PM (#7849121) Homepage Journal
    I'm not sure why there are so many posts bashing the law that prohibits nudity in public. There are many, many people that you absolutely do NOT want to see naked. You'd be crying for the law to be reinstated within minutes.

    In order to keep all of us from clawing our eyes out, we must have an evenhanded law that punishes all violators equally. Because then it gets very problematic for officials to say that only hot people can be naked, and then who is responisble for defining "hot."
    • Re:Umm guys (Score:4, Informative)

      by ender81b (520454) <billdNO@SPAMinebraska.com> on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @06:05PM (#7849340) Homepage Journal
      Agreed. Not only that but this girl is dumber than a box of rocks. I live in lincoln, been to that bar. It's an upscale martini bar which -- most definately -- wasn't happy about this happening at their bar. It caters to upper middle class midwestern clientale, mostly conservative and christian (this is Lincoln after all).

      Got to give her props though, she did get a ton of free publicity off this. I know the guy who runs nebraskacoeds.com and she's making a crap ton of money off all this.

      While it might not seem like a reasonable law, note that this is *nebraska*. It's very republican and conservative. If you don't like it, move to another state ;).
    • Re:Umm guys (Score:3, Funny)

      by jafac (1449)
      I oppose such laws because they make no room for exceptions if the chick is hot.
  • Agh (Score:3, Funny)

    by Bullet-Dodger (630107) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:42PM (#7849128)
    The article does not link to Harrington's website.

    The one article people would actually read, and you have to go and ruin it!

  • She's real torn up (Score:3, Insightful)

    by LittleLebowskiUrbanA (619114) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:42PM (#7849131) Homepage Journal
    All of this free publicity? Yeah, that's worth that little ticket. Listen carefully and you can hear Slashdotters (too cheap to subscribe to ANY website) hustling to their favorite file sharing app for pics and videos of this chick.
    I know because we can smell our own :)
  • Ridiculous penalties (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Giro d'Italia (124843) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:42PM (#7849137)
    She faces a fine and up to 6 months in the big house? That would be far more than this cell phone yakking soccer mom got who killed 4 people a few miles from my house (she got a 400 dollar fine after the DA refused to prosecute, and her being a cop's wife had nothing to do with it, wink wink). More evidence this country is screwed up beyond help.
    • by enjo13 (444114)
      Those are the MAXIMUM penalties. Maximums, as a general rule, are quite stiff. They generally involve multiple offenses and come only after multiple convictions.

      She won't be facing anything remotely CLOSE to those penalties. Probably something in the range of a few hundred dollars and short unsupervised probation. If she continues to violate the law, the penalties will increase.

      Before you post some apparently 'insightful' gibberish about how "this country is screwed up beyond help", at least take the time
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Just curious! That one irked the shit out of me. Cop's wife wipes out an entire family and gets barely a slap on the hand. I drive by the burned spot in the road where three of the four died on the scene, every time I drive to work. It's a straight section of road in a wide, shallow dip that allows you to see way ahead. There's no excuse for not seeing the upcoming obstruction, and no excuse for the driver to not get slammed with four counts of manslaughter at the least, if not vehicular homicide. Grr

  • Back in College... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by DaHat (247651) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:45PM (#7849165) Homepage
    Some non-bright people would be written up for time to time because of pictures of them in possession of alcohol while in their dorm rooms (it was/is a dry campus).

    Many didn't think it 'fair' as no one had caught them in the act, few fully recognized how damaging a photo like that can be... even if false.

    One friend took a picture of me and Photoshoped a water bong and a bottle of vodka into it with me... it was so good looking that the university actually 'investigated' to see if it was true, thankfully it didn't get that far for the simple reason that they knew I wasn't stupid enough to let a real picture like that of me exist.
    • by mariox19 (632969) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @06:01PM (#7849306)
      <tongue-in-cheek>
      1. Take a picture of an empty booth in a bar or other public place where anti-nudity laws exist
      2. Take a nude picture of yourself
      3. Using Photoshop, doctor up a picture of nude you sitting in the booth
      4. Important: Save all original photos and intermediate steps to disk
      5. Publish it on the Internet
      6. Publicize its existence, keeping quiet about Photoshop
      7. Wait for the cops

      Now, the trick would be to encourage pretty girls to do this. I think if local geeks were generous enough to offer their help with Photoshop, more girls would be encouraged.

      If enough people do this, it will clog up the court systems and put an end to these public nudity laws. Best of all, the public nudity law was never broken!

      It's civil disobedience for 2004! Get on board!!!

      </tongue-in-cheek>
  • by soccerisgod (585710) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @05:47PM (#7849178)
    here [melissalincoln.com]
  • One time (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @06:01PM (#7849301)
    that the /. crew actually research the links and people actually go to the links before posting.

    I don't know.
  • by PetoskeyGuy (648788) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @06:06PM (#7849343)
    Protecting you from naked women in public. If guys can go topless, so can girls. Here that girls? :o)
  • I'll be her lawyer. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Junior J. Junior III (192702) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @06:07PM (#7849356) Homepage
    I'll show the jury photos of her nude on the moon, at the Last Supper, in the limo next to JFK, and shaking hands with Elvis Presley. How would they ever know beyond a reasonable doubt that she had really appeared nude in Nebraska if she could be shown to have appeared nude where she couldn't possibly have been?
  • Auuugh! (Score:5, Funny)

    by LordK3nn3th (715352) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @06:08PM (#7849362)
    No! Nudity! FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, NOT NUDITY!

    Auuugh, my precious eyes are going to be corrupted! I can feel my mind melting under the hidious hideiousnedd of NUDITY!

    Why, you know the dangers of nudity in public? Well, there's a lot of them, I'll tell ya!

    * World might implode
    * Meteor might impact earth
    * Solar flare could fry us

    In addition, it might contribute to GLOBAL WARMING!

    FIGHT NUDITY TODAY!
  • No, No, No! (Score:3, Interesting)

    by macemoneta (154740) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @06:34PM (#7849550) Homepage
    She's a web designer, right? It's just a Photoshop/Gimp job! Since no one reported this (sarcasm) heinous crime (/sarcasm), it obviously never really occurred. I remember hearing that digitally processed photographs aren't evidence, unless someone can testify to the authenticity.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @06:46PM (#7849632)
    . . . it's a good bust.
  • by duvel (173522) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @06:52PM (#7849682) Homepage
    Don't know if this is just me, but that is a great motorbike she's sitting on.

    Hey, don't complain, it's a website for geeks, remember?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @07:01PM (#7849737)
    damn nice girl, pity to see this happen to her, for those interested in seeing some free pr0n, checkout Her Website [ibill.com]

    free gallery 1 [melissalincoln.com]
    free gallery 2 [melissalincoln.com]
    free gallery 3 [melissalincoln.com]
    free gallery 4 [melissalincoln.com]
    free gallery 5 [melissalincoln.com]
    free gallery 6 [melissalincoln.com]

  • by JuggleGeek (665620) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @07:22PM (#7849879)
    If God had meant for us to run around nude, we would have been born that way.
  • by suwain_2 (260792) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @07:25PM (#7849897) Journal
    I've always considered myself pretty liberal in most things. However, I'm a little confused on this one. She essentially publishes 'proof' of a crime, and it's outrageous when she's convicted of it?

    I'll grant you that public nudity probably isn't the biggest crime out there right now, but I'm really baffled here. If I rob a bank and have a friend videotape it, then put the videotape up on the web, being convicted based on the videotape makes me a complete moron, not the victim of some 1984-style society.

    The Internet isn't a guarantee of anonymity and complete prevention of liability. This shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone here.
  • by way2trivial (601132) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @07:28PM (#7849914) Homepage Journal
    -everyone R's TFA
    -no one will complain if it is or becomes a dupe

    and I for one welcome our new pair of 34c overlords.

  • by shfted! (600189) <shiftedMPAA@RIAAshifted.ca minus evil> on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @07:29PM (#7849915) Journal
    Like Houston, BC's Sharon Smith [sxxxy.org] (NOT SAFE FOR WORK).
  • by KC7GR (473279) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @08:31PM (#7850328) Homepage Journal
    Want to watch a movie that depicts people being decapitated, eviscerated (with very realistic-looking blood-and-guts effects), and turned into breeding hosts for acid-blooded parasites (the 'Alien' series)? No problem!

    Want to watch news stories that capture the 'Horror of War' close up and personal? No problem!

    Want to watch another movie that depicts people being hacked apart, in very grisly detail, by a chainsaw-wielding maniac? No problem!

    Want to take a look at pictures of a naked female body on the Internet, or pictures of two people engaged in acts of trying to bring each other a little pleasure? NOW we have a problem!

    Given all the awful stuff that's going on in the world today, am I the only one who thinks that police and other law-enforcement agencies could be doing better things with their time than illustrating (by example) that we, as a race, need to be Really Ashamed of our bodies?

  • by erroneus (253617) on Wednesday December 31, 2003 @10:17PM (#7850761) Homepage
    In Dallas, two complaints must be filed to have a ticket issued. This stipulation requires that someone be an active observer and that they be actively offended by the act. This pretty much allows anyone hot-n-sexy to walk down the street nekkid 'cause it ain't likely anyone will be offended... 'cept maybe blimpo women who practice oral sex on cheetos.

That does not compute.

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