2017 Louisiana Laws
TITLE 14 - Criminal Law
RS 14:106 - Obscenity
A. The crime of obscenity is the intentional:
(1) Exposure of the genitals, pubic hair, anus, vulva, or female breast nipples in any public place or place open to the public view, or in any prison or jail, with the intent of arousing sexual desire or which appeals to prurient interest or is patently offensive.
(2)(a) Participation or engagement in, or management, operation, production, presentation, performance, promotion, exhibition, advertisement, sponsorship, electronic communication, or display of, hard core sexual conduct when the trier of fact determines that the average person applying contemporary community standards would find that the conduct, taken as a whole, appeals to the prurient interest; and the hard core sexual conduct, as specifically defined herein, is presented in a patently offensive way; and the conduct taken as a whole lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value.
(b) Hard core sexual conduct is the public portrayal, for its own sake, and for ensuing commercial gain of:
(i) Ultimate sexual acts, normal or perverted, actual, simulated, or animated, whether between human beings, animals, or an animal and a human being; or
(ii) Masturbation, excretory functions or lewd exhibition, actual, simulated, or animated, of the genitals, pubic hair, anus, vulva, or female breast nipples; or
(iii) Sadomasochistic abuse, meaning actual, simulated or animated, flagellation, or torture by or upon a person who is nude or clad in undergarments or in a costume that reveals the pubic hair, anus, vulva, genitals, or female breast nipples, or in the condition of being fettered, bound, or otherwise physically restrained, on the part of one so clothed; or
(iv) Actual, simulated, or animated touching, caressing, or fondling of, or other similar physical contact with a pubic area, anus, female breast nipple, covered or exposed, whether alone or between humans, animals, or a human and an animal, of the same or opposite sex, in an act of apparent sexual stimulation or gratification; or
(v) Actual, simulated, or animated stimulation of a human genital organ by any device whether or not the device is designed, manufactured, or marketed for such purpose.
(3)(a) Sale, allocation, consignment, distribution, dissemination, advertisement, exhibition, electronic communication, or display of obscene material, or the preparation, manufacture, publication, electronic communication, or printing of obscene material for sale, allocation, consignment, distribution, advertisement, exhibition, electronic communication, or display.
(b) Obscene material is any tangible work or thing which the trier of fact determines that the average person applying contemporary community standards would find, taken as a whole, appeals to the prurient interest, and which depicts or describes in a patently offensive way, hard core sexual conduct specifically defined in Paragraph (2) of this Subsection, and the work or thing taken as a whole lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value.
(4) Requiring as a condition to a sale, allocation, consignment, or delivery for resale of any paper, magazine, book, periodical, or publication to a purchaser or consignee that such purchaser or consignee also receive or accept any obscene material, as defined in Paragraph (3) of this Subsection, for resale, distribution, display, advertisement, electronic communication, or exhibition purposes; or, denying or threatening to deny a franchise to, or imposing a penalty, on or against, a person by reason of his refusal to accept, or his return of, such obscene material.
(5) Solicitation or enticement of an unmarried person under the age of seventeen years to commit any act prohibited by Paragraphs (1), (2), or (3) of this Subsection.
(6) Advertisement, exhibition, electronic communication, or display of sexually violent material. "Violent material" is any tangible work or thing which the trier of facts determines depicts actual or simulated patently offensive acts of violence, including but not limited to, acts depicting sadistic conduct, whippings, beatings, torture, and mutilation of the human body, as described in Item (2)(b)(iii) of this Subsection.
(7)(a) Transmission or causing the transmission by a person, knowing the content of an advertisement to be sexually explicit as defined in this Paragraph, of an unsolicited advertisement containing sexually explicit materials in an electronic communication to one or more persons within this state without including in the advertisement the term "ADV-ADULT" at the beginning of the subject line of the advertisement. A "subject line" is the area of an electronic communication that contains a summary description of the content of the message.
(b) As used in this Paragraph, "sexually explicit" means the graphic depiction of sex, including but not limited to sexual audio, text, or images; depiction of sexual activity; nudity; or sexually oriented language.
(8)(a) Transmission or causing the transmission by a person, knowing its content to be sexually explicit as defined in this Paragraph, of an unsolicited text message containing sexually explicit materials to a wireless telecommunications device of one or more persons within this state.
(b) As used in this Paragraph:
(i) "Sexually explicit" means the graphic depiction of sex, including but not limited to sexual audio, text, or images, the depiction of sexual activity, nudity, or sexually oriented language and is obscene as defined in Subparagraph (A)(3)(b) of this Section.
(ii) "Wireless telecommunications device" means a cellular telephone, a text-messaging device, a personal digital assistant, a tablet computer, or any other substantially similar wireless device.
B. Lack of knowledge of age or marital status shall not constitute a defense.
C. If any employee of a theatre or bookstore acting in the course or scope of his employment, is arrested for an offense designated in this Section, the employer shall reimburse the employee for all attorney's fees and other costs of defense of such employee. Such fees and expenses may be fixed by the court exercising criminal jurisdiction after contradictory hearing or by ordinary civil process.
D.(1) The provisions of this Section do not apply to recognized and established schools, churches, museums, medical clinics, hospitals, physicians, public libraries, governmental agencies, quasi-governmental sponsored organizations and persons acting in their capacity as employees or agents of such organizations, or a person solely employed to operate a movie projector in a duly licensed theatre.
(2) For the purpose of this Subsection, the following words and terms shall have the respective meanings defined as follows:
(a) "Churches" means any church, affiliated with a national or regional denomination.
(b) "Medical clinics and hospitals" means any clinic or hospital of licensed physicians or psychiatrists used for the reception and care of persons who are sick, wounded, or infirm.
(c) "Physicians" means any licensed physician or psychiatrist.
(d) "Recognized and established schools" means schools having a full time faculty and pupils, gathered together for instruction in a diversified curriculum.
E. This Section does not preempt, nor shall anything in this Section be construed to preempt, the regulation of obscenity by municipalities, parishes, and consolidated city-parish governments; however, in order to promote uniform obscenity legislation throughout the state, the regulation of obscenity by municipalities, parishes, and consolidated city-parish governments shall not exceed the scope of the regulatory prohibitions contained in the provisions of this Section.
F.(1) Except for those motion pictures, printed materials, electronic communication and photographic materials showing actual ultimate sexual acts or simulated or animated ultimate sexual acts when there is an explicit, close-up depiction of human genital organs so as to give the appearance of the consummation of ultimate sexual acts, no person, firm, or corporation shall be arrested, charged, or indicted for any violations of a provision of this Section until such time as the material involved has first been the subject of an adversarial hearing under the provisions of this Section, wherein such person, firm, or corporation is made a defendant and, after such material is declared by the court to be obscene, such person, firm, or corporation continues to engage in the conduct prohibited by this Section. The sole issue at the hearing shall be whether the material is obscene.
(2) The hearing shall be held before the district court having jurisdiction over the proceedings within seventy-two hours after receipt of notice by the person, firm, or corporation. The person, firm, or corporation shall be given notice of the hearing by registered mail or by personal service on the owner, manager, or other person having a financial interest in the material; provided, if there is no such person on the premises, then notice may be given by personal service on any employee of the person, firm, or corporation on such premises. The notice shall state the nature of the violation, the date, place, and time of the hearing, and the right to present and cross-examine witnesses.
(3) The state or any defendant may appeal from a judgment. Such appeal shall not stay the judgment. Any defendant engaging in conduct prohibited by this Section subsequent to notice of the judgment, finding the material to be obscene, shall be subject to criminal prosecution notwithstanding the appeal from the judgment.
(4) No determination by the district court pursuant to this Section shall be of any force and effect outside the judicial district in which made and no such determination shall be res judicata in any proceeding in any other judicial district. In addition, evidence of any hearing held pursuant to this Section shall not be competent or admissible in any criminal action for the violation of any other Section of this Title; provided, however, that in any criminal action, charging the violation of any other Section of this Title, against any person, firm, or corporation that was a defendant in such hearing, involving the same material declared to be obscene under the provisions of this Section, then evidence of such hearing shall be competent and admissible as bearing on the issue of scienter only.
G.(1) Except as provided in Paragraph (5) of this Subsection, on a first conviction, whoever commits the crime of obscenity shall be fined not less than one thousand dollars nor more than two thousand five hundred dollars, or imprisoned, with or without hard labor, for not less than six months nor more than three years, or both.
(2)(a) Except as provided in Paragraph (5) of this Subsection, on a second conviction, the offender shall be imprisoned, with or without hard labor for not less than six months nor more than three years, and in addition may be fined not less than two thousand five hundred dollars nor more than five thousand dollars.
(b) The imprisonment provided for in Subparagraph (a) of this Paragraph, may be imposed at court discretion if the court determines that the offender, due to his employment, could not avoid engagement in the offense. This Subparagraph shall not apply to the manager or other person in charge of an establishment selling or exhibiting obscene material.
(3) Except as provided in Paragraph (5) of this Subsection, on a third or subsequent conviction, the offender shall be imprisoned with or without hard labor for not less than two years nor more than five years, and in addition may be fined not less than five thousand dollars nor more than ten thousand dollars.
(4) When a violation of Paragraph (1), (2), or (3) of Subsection A of this Section is with or in the presence of an unmarried person under the age of seventeen years, the offender shall be fined not more than ten thousand dollars and shall be imprisoned, with or without hard labor, for not less than two years nor more than five years, without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.
(5) Whoever violates the provisions of Paragraphs (A)(7) or (A)(8) of this Section may be fined not less than one hundred dollars nor more than five hundred dollars.
H.(1) When a corporation is charged with violating this Section, the corporation, the president, the vice president, the secretary, and the treasurer may all be named as defendants. Upon conviction for a violation of this Section, a corporation shall be sentenced in accordance with Subsection G of this Section. All corporate officers who are named as defendants shall be subject to the penalty provisions of this Section as set forth in Subsection G of this Section.
(2) If the corporation is domiciled in this state, upon indictment or information filed against the corporation, a notice of arraignment shall be served upon the corporation, or its designated agent for service of process, which then must appear before the district court in which the prosecution is pending to plead to the charge within fifteen days of service. If no appearance is made within fifteen days, an attorney shall be appointed by the court to represent the defendant corporation with respect to the charge or to show cause why the corporation should not be enjoined from continuing in business during the pendency of the criminal proceedings. Appearance for arraignment may be made through private counsel.
(3) If the corporation is domiciled out of state and is registered to do business in Louisiana, notice of arraignment shall be served upon the corporate agent for service of process or the secretary of state, who shall then notify the corporation charged by indictment or information to appear before the district court in which the prosecution is pending for arraignment within sixty days after the notice is mailed by the secretary of state. If no appearance is made within sixty days the court shall appoint an attorney to represent the defendant corporation with respect to the charge or to show cause why the corporation should not be enjoined from continuing in business during the pendency of the criminal proceedings. Appearance for arraignment may be made by private counsel.
(4) If the corporation is domiciled out of state and is not registered to do business in Louisiana, notice of arraignment of the corporation shall be served upon the secretary of state and an employee, officer, or agent for service of process of the corporation found within the parish where the violation of this Section has allegedly occurred. Such notice shall act as a bar to that corporation registering to do business in Louisiana until it appears before the district court in which the prosecution is pending to answer the charge.
I.(1)(a) When an act of obscenity as defined in Paragraph (A)(1) of this Section is reported, the law enforcement agency acting in response to the reported incident shall provide notice of the incident to the principal or headmaster of each school located within two thousand feet of where the incident occurred. This notice shall be provided by the law enforcement agency to the principal or headmaster within twenty-four hours of receiving the report of the incident and by any reasonable means, including but not limited to live or recorded telephone message or electronic mail.
(b) The notice required by the provisions of Subparagraph (a) of this Paragraph shall include the date, time, and location of the incident, a brief description of the incident, and a brief description of the physical characteristics of the alleged offender which may include but shall not be limited to the alleged offender's sex, race, hair color, eye color, height, age, and weight.
(2)(a) Within twenty-four hours of receiving notice of the incident from law enforcement pursuant to the provisions of Paragraph (1) of this Subsection, the principal or headmaster shall provide notice of the incident to the parents of all students enrolled at the school by any reasonable means, including but not limited to live or recorded telephone message or electronic mail.
(b) The notice required by the provisions of Subparagraph (a) of this Paragraph shall include the same information required for the notice provided in Paragraph (1) of this Subsection to the extent that the information is provided by law enforcement to the principal or headmaster of the school.
(3) When the expiration of the twenty-four-hour period occurs on a weekend or holiday, notice shall be provided no later than the end of the next regular school day.
(4) For purposes of this Subsection, "school" means any public or private elementary or secondary school in this state, including all facilities of the school located within the geographical boundaries of the school property.
(5) The principal, headmaster, school, owner of the school, operator of the school, and the insurer or self-insurance program for the school shall be immune from any liability that arises as a result of compliance or noncompliance with this Subsection, except for any willful violation of the provisions of this Subsection.
Amended by Acts 1950, No. 314, §1; Acts 1958, No. 388, §1; Acts 1960, No. 199, §1; Acts 1962, No. 87, §1; Acts 1968, No. 647, §1; Acts 1970, No. 167, §1; Acts 1972, No. 605, §1; Acts 1972, No. 743, §1; Acts 1974, No. 274, §1; Acts 1977, No. 97, §2; Acts 1977, No. 717, §1, eff. July 20, 1977; Acts 1979, No. 252, §1; Acts 1980, No. 464, §1; Acts 1981, No. 159, §1; Acts 1982, No. 680, §1; Acts 1983, No. 384, §1; Acts 1983, No. 385, §1; Acts 2001, No. 177, §1; Acts 2001, No. 403, §1, eff. June 15, 2001; Acts 2003, No. 237, §1; Acts 2012, No. 846, §1; Acts 2014, No. 531, §1; Acts 2014, No. 811, §6, eff. June 23, 2014.