The story of the man, reportedly a congressional staffer, who filmed himself having sex in a Senate hearing room in the Hart Senate Office Building has a new element — with the U.S. Capitol Police telling Fox, “We are aware and looking into this.”
George Washington University Law School professor Jonathan Turley said he had testified in the room in question. He said there have been confirmation and impeachment hearings there, among other notable events.
Turley broke down what laws might be involved, if any, in terms of the actions in the sex in the Senate hearing room video.
One obvious criminal provision under the D.C. code is Section 22-1312 for lewd, indecent, or obscene acts:
“It is unlawful for a person, in public, to make an obscene or indecent exposure of his or her genitalia or anus, to engage in masturbation, or to engage in a sexual act as defined in § 22-3001(8). It is unlawful for a person to make an obscene or indecent sexual proposal to a minor. A person who violates any provision of this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be fined not more than the amount set forth in § 22-3571.01, imprisoned for not more than 90 days, or both.”
But he said the obvious question there would be whether it qualified as “public” in a closed hearing room.
He also raised questions about trespass. Under 18 U.S.C. 1752, trespass covers anyone who “knowingly enters or remains in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority to do so.” So it might depend on if he had lawful authority to be there at that point.
He said they might also look at misuse of public property under 18 U.S.C. 641. He said the key question would be if was made to be distributed or shared publicly.
Turley pointed out how this incident put the Democrats in a bit of a bind because they were freaking out over Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) wanting to show a picture of Hunter Biden as part of investigating questions regarding him.
Turley said the press on the Capitol Police was likely to be “considerable in the coming days.”
Only recently, House members Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., and Rep. Jamie Raskin claimed that house rules were broken by Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene showing Hunter Biden and a woman in a revealing picture, though he was purportedly wearing a swimsuit. Raskin objected that it would constitute “pornographic exhibits that might not be suitable for children watching.”
While this was not a public hearing, those objections now seem almost puritanical in light what just occurred over in the Senate hearing room.
Indeed, it’s going to be hard for them to gripe about such things if they don’t speak out against this. But they probably won’t, which will just show their hypocrisy. This is going to be on their heads for a long time, and I don’t think they’re going to be able to live this one down anytime soon.
Now, we shall have to see, but while I think there will be pressure on the police, from what we’ve seen before, I doubt that there would be any charges, even if any of the laws applied to the situation.