Prosecuted For Taking Pictures Of Fully Clothed Children

[Ed: This is really extraordinary! This guy is being prosecuted for taking pictures of young girls at a public event without their parent's permission. The girls, obviously, were fully clothed and yet the photos were alleged to be "sexually suggestive". Yeah, right. They weren't even posed. The girls were running around being kids. So because someone thought he was suspicious, the police were alerted and he was arrested, prosecuted and will have to register as a sex offender. So apparently, U.S. laws which had previously allowed anyone to photograph anyone or anything else in public without fear of arrest has been thrown out the window. When did this happen? Does anyone give a shit anymore? ]

Ex-LAPD officer who photographed young girls pleads guilty

Ralph Lakin surreptitiously took more than 90 sexually suggestive photos at a Garden Grove festival in 2007. He gets four years' probation and must register as a sex offender.
By Susannah Rosenblatt

1:09 PM PST, January 13, 2009

A former Los Angeles Police Department officer pleaded guilty today in Orange County Superior Court to charges he took sexually suggestive photographs of young girls at the Garden Grove Strawberry Festival in 2007.

Ralph Cameron Lakin, 55, of La Palma pleaded guilty to eight misdemeanor counts and was sentenced to four years' probation and 100 hours of community service. He also must register as a sex offender.

According to Orange County prosecutors, Lakin surreptitiously snapped digital pictures of nine girls, ranging in age from about 4 to 13, at the outdoor family carnival on May 26, 2007.

The officer took more than 90 such photos that morning, eventually following a 5-year-old girl to photograph her as she climbed out of a wagon in a dress. A witness alerted the girl's father, who detained Lakin until police arrived.

Authorities found nearly 150 similar photos of little girls on Lakin's home computer, including one image of a nude toddler, prosecutors said.

Lakin retired from the LAPD last February after 10 years. At the time of his arrest, he worked downtown reviewing excessive force cases.

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