Pa. Supreme Court Upholds Ban on Porn in Prisons

Pa. Supreme Court Upholds Ban on Porn in Prisons
Bob Preston
HARRISBURG, Pa. — The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has upheld a ban on adult content in its state prisons.

The unanimous vote came down this week and maintains a ban put in place back in 2005 against "materials in which the purpose was sexual arousal." The ban extends beyond hardcore content to include anything that depicts nudity.

The case reached the state's high court for a second time because a prisoner filed a complaint saying the ban violated his constitutional rights. The prisoner, convicted rapist Shannon Brittain, joined with six other inmates in statements asserting that "the viewing of pornography does not hinder rehabilitation or treatment."

In a May decision related to child pornography, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that prosecutors don't have to prove that a defendant intentionally downloaded the content to get a conviction.

In effect, the ruling said that the mere viewing of child pornography online was a felony. The defendant in the case, Anthony Diodoro, was arrested and found to have 370 images of child pornography in his computer's cache.

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