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Texas Woman Awarded $1.2 Billion in Revenge Porn Lawsuit

A Texas woman has been granted a $1.2 billion settlement following a ruling by a Houston-area jury that found her to be the victim of revenge porn. The woman, referred to as D.L. in court documents, filed a lawsuit in April 2022 against her former boyfriend Marques Jamal Jackson in Harris County, Texas. The suit alleges that Jackson posted intimate images of his ex-girlfriend on social media platforms and adult websites with the intent to embarrass, harass, torment, humiliate, and publicly shame her. The lawsuit also accuses Jackson of intruding into the plaintiff’s mother’s home security system to spy on D.L. after their breakup, as well as sending links to her friends and family that contained the uploaded intimate images.

A symbolic win

The $1.2 billion settlement represents a symbolic victory for victims of revenge porn, which inflicts psychological abuse, domestic violence, and sexual abuse, according to Bradford J. Gilde, the plaintiff’s attorney from Gilde Law Firm. Gilde mentioned that while the judgment in this case is unlikely to be collected, the compensatory verdict restores D.L.’s reputation. The punitive verdict also serves as a call from the jury to raise awareness about this national epidemic fueled by technology.

D.L. joins a growing list of revenge porn cases where victims have been awarded significant sums of money. In 2021, a Maryland woman won $500,000 in damages from a Michigan man who posted her nude photographs online. Similarly, a California woman received $6.45 million in compensation after her ex-boyfriend shared explicit pictures and videos of her on the internet. Almost all 50 states, including Texas, have enacted laws prohibiting revenge porn, with the exceptions of Massachusetts and South Carolina.

“Despicable activity”

According to court documents, Jackson and D.L. began dating in 2016 and later moved to Chicago together for Jackson’s job. During their relationship, D.L. felt comfortable sharing intimate images with Jackson. However, after their breakup in October 2021, when D.L. returned to Texas, Jackson allegedly began posting her private images online. One of Jackson’s final messages to D.L. reportedly stated, “You will spend the rest of your life trying and failing to wipe yourself off the internet. Everyone you ever meet will hear the story and go looking.”

Jackson has not yet responded to requests for comment. Gilde commended D.L.’s courage in standing up against this despicable activity and expressed hope that the substantial verdict would serve as a deterrent and prevent others from engaging in revenge porn.

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