Criminal Invasion of Privacy in Colorado
CRS 18-7-801

In Colorado, taking pictures of a person's intimate body parts without their consent is criminal invasion of privacy. Criminal invasion of privacy is a class 2 misdemeanor. The penalties for invasion of privacy include 3 to 12 months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000. Invasion of privacy may also require registration as a sex offender. In this article, our Colorado criminal defense lawyers will address:

Invasionofprivacy
In Colorado, taking pictures of a person’s intimate body parts without their consent is criminal invasion of privacy. Criminal invasion of privacy is a class 2 misdemeanor.

1. What is criminal invasion of privacy?

A person who knowingly observes or takes a photograph of another person's intimate parts without that person's consent is criminal invasion of privacy. This involves situations where the person observed or photographed has a reasonable expectation of privacy. 1

Intimate parts include the external genitalia, perineum, anus, buttocks, pubic region, or breasts of any person.2

Invasion of privacy includes observation or photographs. A person can be charged with criminal invasion of privacy if they set up a camera to observe a person at a later time. This includes hiding a camera in a dressing room that provides a live feed, or recording images to be collected at a later time. If the camera is discovered, the individual may be arrested and charged with invasion of privacy even if they never got a chance to look at the photos.

Invasion of privacy requires the person to be observed or photographed in an area where they have an expectation of privacy. Observing a person's intimate parts may not be considered an invasion of privacy when it occurs in a place such as a known nude beach or inside a strip club.

2. What types of photographs are prohibited?

Taking photographs of a person's intimate parts without consent it not limited to traditional photos.3 Under C.R.S. 18-7-801, photographs include:

  • Photographs
  • Motion Pictures
  • Videotapes
  • Live Feeds
  • Prints
  • Negatives
  • Slides; or
  • Other reproduced visual material.

3. What are the penalties for invasion of privacy?

Invasion of privacy is a class 2 misdemeanor in Colorado. The penalties for a conviction for invasion of privacy include 3 to 12 months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000.4

In some cases, invasion of privacy may be considered a crime of moral turpitude or a crime against the public good. Crimes of moral turpitude have immigration consequences. If you are applying for citizenship, a conviction for invasion of privacy may be a deportable offense.

4. Do I have to register as a sex offender for invasion of privacy?

A conviction for invasion of privacy may require registration as a sex offender if it was done for sexual gratification. Invasion of privacy for sexual gratification is a separate criminal offense under C.R.S. 18-3-405.6. Invasion of privacy for sexual gratification is a class 1 misdemeanor; however, it is a class 6 felony if the defendant has a prior conviction or photography was of a person under the age of 15.5

Invasion of privacy for sexual gratification is an extraordinary risk crime, with increased penalties. It also results in designation as a sex offender.6 As a sex offender, your name will be entered into the Colorado Bureau of Investigation's sex offender registry.

A sex offender has to register with the local chief of police or county sheriff in any jurisdiction where they reside. Registration includes providing the sex offender's name, date of birth, address, place of employment, fingerprints, a photograph, email addresses, and instant messaging or chat room identities. The sex offender will also have to re-register every year within 5 days of their birthday or re-register if they change address or begin working at an institution of higher education.

Failure to register as a sex offender or knowingly providing false information is a criminal offense, punishable by prison and a possible fine. Failure to register as a sex offender for misdemeanor criminal invasion of privacy is a class 1 misdemeanor. Failure to register for felony criminal invasion of privacy is a class 6 felony.7

5. Related Offenses

5.1. Invasion of Privacy for Sexual Gratification C.R.S. 18-3-405.6

Taking intimate photos of people without their consent for sexual gratification can be a misdemeanor or felony, depending on the defendant's criminal history and the age of the victim. It is also an extraordinary risk crime. A conviction for invasion of privacy for sexual gratification may result in up to 2 years in prison, a fine of up to $100,000, and classification as a sex offender.

5.2. Indecent Exposure C.R.S. 18-7-302

Exposing your genitals to another person is considered indecent exposure and a violation of Colorado law. Masturbating in public is also considered indecent exposure. Indecent exposure is a class 1 misdemeanor in Colorado and can result in up to 18 months in prison and a $5,000 fine. A conviction for indecent exposure may also require you to register as a sex offender.

5.3. Public Indecency C.R.S. 18-7-302

Exposing your intimate body parts, having sex in public, or exposing your genitals to offend another person is a violation of Colorado's public indecency statute. Public indecency is a class 1 petty offense. A conviction for public indecency could result in up to 6 months in jail and a fine of up to $500.

5.4. Lewd Conduct C.R.S. 18-7-301

Lewd conduct involves exposing your genitals, having sex in public or masturbating in public, or fondling another person is a violation of Colorado's public indecency and indecent exposure laws. The penalties for lewd conduct depend on whether the conduct is charged as public indecency or indecent exposure.

5.5. Criminal Trespass C.R.S. 18-4-502

You commit Colorado criminal trespass when you unlawfully enter or remain on someone else's property. Trespass can be in the first, second or third degree, depending on the type of property involved, and your reason for entering or remaining on the property. Penalties for criminal trespass in Colorado range from as little as a fine and probation to as much as three years in prison and a $100,000 fine.

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If you or a loved one is arrested for criminal invasion of privacy, please contact us at Colorado Legal Defense Group. Our caring Colorado defense attorneys have many years of experience representing clients who have been charged with criminal offenses. We are among the best Colorado criminal defense attorneys to call. Contact us today for a free consultation by phone or in-person or in our Denver law office.


Legal References

  1. C.R.S. 18-7-801(1)
  2. C.R.S. 18-3-401(2)
  3. C.R.S. 18-7-801(3)
  4. C.R.S. 18-7-801(2)
  5. C.R.S. 18-3-405.6(2)
  6. C.R.S. 16-22-102(9)(aa)
  7. C.R.S. 18-3-412.5

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