TRENTON, N.J. (AP) - Some New Jersey lawmakers want to criminalize the surreptitious recording or photographing of a person's undergarments.
The Assembly's Judiciary Committee approved a measure Thursday that would make so-called "upskirting" a fourth-degree offense.
The legislation says upskirting is an invasion of privacy that occurs when one person conceals a camera or other recording devices in order to capture an image of a person's intimate parts.
Violators could face up to 18 months in jail and fines of up to $10,000.
"Upskirting is not a prank or a game. It's a crime - a defiling and invasive crime," said Democratic Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle. "Today we're putting perpetrators on notice that they will face consequences for their actions."
Proponents of the measure say perpetrators have set up numerous websites to share these kinds of images. They add that some states have had difficulty prosecuting these actions.
The measure also makes it a third-degree offense to share the images if they've been acquired without permission. Violators would face three to five years in prison and up to $15,000 in fines.