Senate committee stalls upskirting bill, calls it too severe

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Wisconsin State Capitol

MADISON (AP) — A bill that would make upskirting — the act of secretly taking a photo of someone’s genitals, buttocks or breasts — a stand-alone felony has reached a standstill in a state Senate committee.

Current state law doesn’t address upskirting. District attorneys, however typically prosecute upskirting as a misdemeanor invasion of privacy. The bill would make upskirting a felony punishable by up to 3 ½ years in prison.

Republican state Sen. Van Wanggaard, the leader of the Senate’s judiciary committee, says the bill has stalled. He says committee members are concerned making upskirting a felony is too harsh.

The bill’s author, Mequon Republican Rep. Jim Ott, says the punishment fits the crime. He says upskirting can leave victims traumatized.

The state Assembly approved the bill on a voice vote last month.

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