Texas Penal Code § 43.251. Employment Harmful to Children

(a) In this section:

(1) “Child” means a person younger than 18 years of age.

(2) “Massage” has the meaning assigned to the term “massage therapy” by Section 455.001, Occupations Code .

(3) “Massage establishment” has the meaning assigned by Section 455.001, Occupations Code .

(4) “Nude” means a child who is:

(A) entirely unclothed;  or

(B) clothed in a manner that leaves uncovered or visible through less than fully opaque clothing any portion of the breasts below the top of the areola of the breasts, if the child is female, or any portion of the genitals or buttocks.

(5) “Sexually oriented commercial activity” means a massage establishment, nude studio, modeling studio, love parlor, or other similar commercial enterprise the primary business of which is the offering of a service that is intended to provide sexual stimulation or sexual gratification to the customer.

(6) “Topless” means a female child clothed in a manner that leaves uncovered or visible through less than fully opaque clothing any portion of her breasts below the top of the areola.

(b) A person commits an offense if the person employs, authorizes, or induces a child to work:

(1) in a sexually oriented commercial activity;  or

(2) in any place of business permitting, requesting, or requiring a child to work nude or topless.

(c) An offense under this section is a felony of the second degree, except that the offense is a felony of the first degree if the victim is younger than 14 years of age at the time the offense is committed, regardless of whether the actor knows the age of the victim   1 at the time of the offense.

(d) Conduct under this section constitutes an offense regardless of whether the actor knows the age of the victim at the time of the offense.

1   Subsections (c) and (d) as amended by Acts 2017, 85th Leg., ch. 685 (H.B. 29), § 42 use the term “child” instead of “victim”.  The amendment by Acts 2017, 85th Leg., ch. 1038 (H.B. 1808), § 13 substituted the term “victim” for “child” throughout (c) and (d).  Otherwise the amendments by the two acts were identical.

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