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Mar-18-2010 18:03printcomments

Washington Man Arrested for 'Communication With a Minor for Immoral Purposes'

Thought Crimes in Washington State?


(BATTLEGROUND, Wash) - Police in Washington sent out a news release today stating that a man was arrested for "Communication with a minor for immoral purposes". We have not been able to gain any more details; contacted Lt. Roy Butler with Battleground Police, who said due to the investigation, he was unable to provide further background on the case.

He did not confirm whether this was Internet related, or something else.

The release indicates that on 18 March, officers and detectives from the Battle Ground Police department arrested David Harlen for one count of Communication with a minor for immoral purposes; RCW 9.68A.090.

We looked it up, never having heard of this crime in the past. Needless to say, it sounds very broad in a nation of free speech, that is why we were hoping to gain more information for our readers.

RCW 9.68A.090- Communication with minor for immoral purposes — Penalties, is defined by the Washington State Legislature as:

(1) Except as provided in subsection (2) of this section, a person who communicates with a minor for immoral purposes, or a person who communicates with someone the person believes to be a minor for immoral purposes, is guilty of a gross misdemeanor.

(2) A person who communicates with a minor for immoral purposes is guilty of a class C felony punishable according to chapter 9A.20 RCW if the person has previously been convicted under this section or of a felony sexual offense under chapter 9.68A, 9A.44, or 9A.64 RCW or of any other felony sexual offense in this or any other state or if the person communicates with a minor or with someone the person believes to be a minor for immoral purposes through the sending of an electronic communication.

[2006 c 139 § 1. Prior: 2003 c 53 § 42; 2003 c 26 § 1; 1989 c 32 § 7; 1986 c 319 § 2; 1984 c 262 § 8.]

Intent -- Effective date -- 2003 c 53: See notes following RCW 2.48.180.

Mr. Harlen was booked into the Clark County Jail. This arrest follows the service of a search warrant at the home of Mr. Harlen on 03-17-2010 by Officers from the Battle Ground Police Department and Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Police in Battle Ground say they are conducting further investigations are being conducted and evidence is being analyzed. Anyone with any information can contact Detective Sean Hendrickson at 360-342-5244.

This is an on-going investigation and no further information is available for release at this time.

Washington Legislature site on law:

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