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Maryland mayor arrested and charged for distributing revenge porn

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The mayor of Cambridge, Maryland has been arrested and charged with 50 counts of distributing revenge porn. State Prosecutor Charlton T. Howard III filed the charges against Mayor Andrew Bradshaw in the Circuit Court for Dorchester County, according to a statement from Howard’s office.

Bradshaw is accused of creating multiple Reddit accounts using the name and vital statistics of a female with whom he previously had a romantic relationship. Nude photographs captioned with racial slurs and sexually explicit language were posted without the woman’s consent and in violation of Maryland’s Revenge Porn Statute. She is referred to as VICTIM-1 in the filing.

“VICTIM-1 advised that she transmitted the posted photographs only to one other person, Andrew Bradshaw, that the photographs were sent when she and Bradshaw were in an intimate relationship, and that she not provide Bradshaw with consent to re-distribute the photographs,” said the complaint, filed in Dorchester County circuit court.

“Using someone’s private images without their consent is a serious breach of trust and invasion of privacy, and the power and breadth of the internet makes such a violation even more egregious,” Howard said in the statement.

“Our office is committed to protecting victims from those who abuse their positions of power and trust,” he added.

Bradshaw was arrested on Monday and, after an initial hearing, was released on his own recognizance. The court ordered him to refrain from any contact with the victim. Records indicate that Bradshaw has not chosen an attorney as of yet.

In a statement posted to Cambridge’s website, the city said it is “aware of the matter involving the Mayor” but that “the business of the City is unaffected.”

“The City is aware of the matter involving the Mayor. The City is currently gathering information and will cooperate fully with the Maryland State Police and the Office of the State Prosecutor. As the City has a Council-Manager form of municipal government whereby the City Manager serves as the chief executive officer of the City and the head of its administrative branch, the business of the City is unaffected. As this is an active legal matter, no further comments will be made at this time.”

 

Maryland’s revenge porn law prohibits the non-consensual distribution of a private, visual representation of another person that exposes the person’s intimate body or displays the person engaged in sexual activity with the intent to harm, harass, intimidate, threaten or coerce the person, the statement read.

Bradshaw posted to forums on Reddit that are associated with the topics of sexual activity, humiliation, degradation and race, prosecutors said.

The social media outlet has not responded to a request for comment from NBC News, though it maintains it does not allow distribution of sexually explicit media without the consent of the parties involved.

Bradshaw, 32, took office in January and became the youngest mayor in the city’s history. If convicted, he could face a maximum of two years in prison and a fine of $5,000 for each count of distributing the pornographic material.

Frank Webster

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