Jay Tamboli / flickr (CC BY 2.0) | Remix by Max Fleishman

Transgender man is second LGBT person sentenced for revenge porn in U.K.

The new U.K. revenge porn law has already been used to prosecute two LGBT defendants.

Feb 29, 2020, 7:53 pm*

IRL

 

Mary Emily O'Hara

The new U.K. revenge porn law has already been used to prosecute two LGBT defendants.

The most recent is 23-year-old Welsh transgender man Jesse Hawthorne, a Caerphilly resident who went to court on Friday and faced charges of both nonconsensual pornography (revenge porn) and criminal damage. 

In early September, a 24-year-old lesbian named Paige Mitchell became the first woman sentenced for revenge porn in the U.K.—along with an assault charge after hitting the girlfriend whose nude photos she posted on Facebook.

According to the Telegraph, Hawthorne also posted revealing photos of his ex, Laurie Jones, to Facebook. Reports said the two had previously been in a two-and-a-half-year lesbian relationship prior to Hawthorne’s gender transition. A few months after breaking up, Hawthorne showed up at Jones’ house in May demanding that she return his dog. A fight between Hawthorne and Jones’ current boyfriend ensued, and Jones’ car and cellphone were both damaged.

Hawthorne was cleared of four counts of criminal damage on Friday, denying reports that he smashed the car with a golf club and saying instead that the damage occurred when Jones’ boyfriend threw him onto the car during the fight.

But Hawthorne pled guilty to one count of revenge porn, and will be sentenced for the crime on Oct. 7. The sentence could carry up to two years of jail time.

Both the Hawthorne case and that of Paige Mitchell earlier this month shine a light on the high levels of domestic violence in lesbian, bisexual, and trans relationships. According to a 2013 CDC study in the U.S., women were more likely to suffer domestic violence, stalking, or sexual assault at the hands of a female partner than by a male partner—with 61 percent of bisexual women and about 44 percent of lesbians reporting incidents, numbers that were higher than among heterosexual women.

Here in the U.S., only two revenge porn cases have involved female perpetrators, and neither were identified as being in LGBT relationships. That discrepancy could be due to the lack of a federal revenge porn law in the U.S., and a slowly growing awareness of the criminal nature of the act according to a smattering of state laws.

Photo via Jay Tamboli / Flickr (CC BY 2.0) | Remix by Max Fleishman

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*First Published: Sep 12, 2015, 1:10 pm