Tennessee judges: It’s OK to film clothed women in public without their consent
A group of Tennessee judges ruled it isn’t a crime to film women fully clothed without their consent in public.
Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals Judges D. Kelly Thomas Jr., James Curwood Witt Jr. and Thomas T. Woodall wrote three separate but identical opinions when dismissing unlawful photography convictions against pervert David Eric Lambert, reported the Knoxville News Sentinel.
Lambert, 40, admitted to stalking women in retail stores and filming their “private areas” for “sexual gratification.” He grabbed at least one of them on the rear, and photographed them without their consent.
The sexual deviant who has a history of public indecency filmed women at Walmart, Hobby Lobby and other shopping centers in Tennessee.
“I did not mean to scare anyone and only filmed the females for my own purposes. I just like using the video function on my phone,” he told police in Kingsport, Tenn., according to the decision filed April 28.
He called it more of “an obsession with the technological aspect of a phone” than perversion.
The judges all agreed no one has a right to expect privacy in the digital age.
“Exposure to the capture of our images by cameras has become, perhaps unfortunately, a reality of daily life in our digital age,” Thomas wrote.
“When nearly every person goes about her day with a handheld device capable of taking hundreds of photographs and videos and every public place is equipped with a wide variety of surveillance equipment, it is simply not reasonable to expect that our fully clothed images will remain totally private,” he concluded.
The trio acknowledged Lambert’s victims found him “creepy” but the trio concluded without an “expectation of privacy,” his actions aren’t criminal.
The three-judge panel left intact the sexual battery conviction.
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