Utah House Bill 141, Aggravated Sexual Exploitation of a Minor, failed to pass through the Senate after the House voted in favor. If this bill had passed, the penalty for sexual exploitation of a minor would have increased from a second to a first degree felony under certain circumstances; specifically, when the exploitation was done by a family member or when the victim was under 5 years of age.

This bill should have passed through both the House and the Senate. The penalty for using your own kids for child pornography, or for using infants and toddlers to create heinous images, should absolutely be increased.

This bill would’ve empowered young children and given them the closure needed to recover. Instead, these children will continue to be exploited and revictimized as their perpetrators, if caught, receive minimal sentencing.

Haley Ashby, Draper