Certain defenses barred, permitted.
(1) In a prosecution under RCW 9.68A.040, it is not a defense that the defendant was involved in activities of law enforcement and prosecution agencies in the investigation and prosecution of criminal offenses. Law enforcement and prosecution agencies shall not employ minors to aid in the investigation of a violation of RCW 9.68A.090 or 9.68A.100 through 9.68A.102, except for the purpose of facilitating an investigation where the minor is also the alleged victim and the:
(a) Investigation is authorized pursuant to RCW 9.73.230(1)(b)(ii) or 9.73.210(1)(b); or
(b) Minor's aid in the investigation involves only telephone or electronic communication with the defendant.
(2) In a prosecution under RCW 9.68A.050, 9.68A.060, 9.68A.070, or 9.68A.080, it is not a defense that the defendant did not know the age of the child depicted in the visual or printed matter. It is a defense, which the defendant must prove by a preponderance of the evidence, that at the time of the offense the defendant was not in possession of any facts on the basis of which he or she should reasonably have known that the person depicted was a minor.
(3) In a prosecution under RCW 9.68A.040, 9.68A.090, 9.68A.100, 9.68A.101, or 9.68A.102, it is not a defense that the defendant did not know the alleged victim's age. It is a defense, which the defendant must prove by a preponderance of the evidence, that at the time of the offense, the defendant made a reasonable bona fide attempt to ascertain the true age of the minor by requiring production of a driver's license, marriage license, birth certificate, or other governmental or educational identification card or paper and did not rely solely on the oral allegations or apparent age of the minor.
(4) In a prosecution under RCW 9.68A.050, 9.68A.060, 9.68A.070, or 9.68A.075, it shall be an affirmative defense that the defendant was a law enforcement officer or a person specifically authorized, in writing, to assist a law enforcement officer and acting at the direction of a law enforcement officer in the process of conducting an official investigation of a sex-related crime against a minor, or that the defendant was providing individual case treatment as a recognized medical facility or as a psychiatrist or psychologist licensed under Title 18 RCW. Nothing in chapter 227, Laws of 2010 is intended to in any way affect or diminish the immunity afforded an electronic communication service provider, remote computing service provider, or domain name registrar acting in the performance of its reporting or preservation responsibilities under 18 U.S.C. Secs. 2258a, 2258b, or 2258c.
(5) In a prosecution under RCW 9.68A.050, 9.68A.060, 9.68A.070, or 9.68A.075, the state is not required to establish the identity of the alleged victim.
(6) In a prosecution under RCW 9.68A.070 or 9.68A.075, it shall be an affirmative defense that:
(a) The defendant was employed at or conducting research in partnership or in cooperation with any institution of higher education as defined in RCW 28B.07.020 or 28B.10.016, and:
(i) He or she was engaged in a research activity;
(ii) The research activity was specifically approved prior to the possession or viewing activity being conducted in writing by a person, or other such entity vested with the authority to grant such approval by the institution of higher education; and
(iii) Viewing or possessing the visual or printed matter is an essential component of the authorized research; or
(b) The defendant was an employee of the Washington state legislature engaged in research at the request of a member of the legislature and:
(i) The request for research is made prior to the possession or viewing activity being conducted in writing by a member of the legislature;
(ii) The research is directly related to a legislative activity; and
(iii) Viewing or possessing the visual or printed matter is an essential component of the requested research and legislative activity.
(7) Nothing in this section authorizes otherwise unlawful viewing or possession of visual or printed matter depicting a minor engaged in sexually explicit conduct.
[2011 c 241 § 4. Prior: 2010 c 289 § 17; 2010 c 227 § 8; 2007 c 368 § 3; 1992 c 178 § 1; 1989 c 32 § 9; 1986 c 319 § 3; 1984 c 262 § 10.]
| Findings -- Effective date -- 2011 c 241: See notes following RCW 9.73.230.|
Severability -- 1992 c 178: "If any provision of this act or its application to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the remainder of the act or the application of the provision to other persons or circumstances is not affected." [1992 c 178 § 2.]