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The American Center for Law and Justice recognized the significance of this case as well and their Chief Counsel, Jay Sekulow, was appointed special district attorney to represent the state at the Georgia Supreme Court. Sekulow defended the statute eloquently at oral argument before the Court in February.
In a huge victory for children, on Tuesday, July 5, 2016, the Georgia Supreme Court upheld the statute!
Among the arguments his defense counsel made to the Court was that Scott had a First Amendment right to “talk dirty” to a child as long as this talk did not rise to the level of obscenity.
This was a very important step in protecting children and curbing the vast amount of sexual exploitation occurring in Internet space.
The statute at issue criminalized Internet contact with a child, or a person believed to be a child, containing “explicit verbal descriptions or narrative account of sexually explicit nudity, sexual conduct, sexual excitement, or sadomasochistic abuse that is intended to arouse or satisfy the sexual desire of either the child or the person.” The appellant, Jack Bernard Scott, who was arrested for violating this statute, challenged its constitutionality claiming it was overbroad on its face—that it criminalized lawful speech protected by the First Amendment.