Bad News Out Of Boston: Upskirt Photos Are (Somehow) Legal

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What was the logic here?

 

In a move that is making headlines across the country, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled that upkirting (the act of taking a picture beneath a person's clothing, usually a dress or skirt) is legal and not covered under the existing Peeping Tom law already in effect. The ruling sprang from the case against Michael Robertson, who was charged with taking upskirt photos of women on Boston public transportation, and was eventually caught in 2010 during a sting operation.

The court decided that because the women in question were not "partially nude" that the photos Robertson took were not nude pics and thus there was no violation of the Peeping Tom law.  Justice Margot Botsford stated, "A female passenger on a MBTA trolley who is wearing a skirt, dress, or the like covering these parts of her body is not a person who is 'partially nude,' no matter what is or is not underneath the skirt by way of underwear or other clothing."

The prosecution tried to argue that upskirting, whether a person is "partially nude" or not, is indeed a violation and included under the existing law, but it came to naught. Following the ruling, District Attorney Daniel Conley put out a statement saying, "Every person, male or female, has a right to privacy beneath his or her own clothing. If the statute as written doesn't protect that privacy, then I'm urging the Legislature to act rapidly and adjust it so it does."

Here's hoping that the people of Boston don't have to worry about perverts on public transportation for much longer. If there's any luck, legislation will move quickly through the courts to better protect the privacy of a person's body under his or her own clothes.

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