Arizona PSA helps people hide their child porn

A PSA in Arizona that tells people how to hide child pornography and avoid being arrested has been playing for two years and is just now coming to the attention of the community of Benson, according to CNN.

The PSA tells those who use child pornography to store the content on a specific type of hard drive and then “hide it where nobody will ever find it.” It continues to tell people how to evade police and ends by calling itself a “public service message.”

The station, KAVV in Benson, does not cover a large area. The station owner, Paul Lotsof, created the PSA and aired it after midnight on the station. The recording has been playing for two years, and no one has noticed it until now.

Benson residents are in an uproar over the discovery. One resident Jeanne Dyer complained to CNN affiliate KVOA this week.

“It’s wrong, it should be taken down. It’s sickening.”

The PSA is no longer airing, but the community continues to ask about the legality of it. Cochise County Attorney Brian McIntyre told CNN that Lotsof is protected by the constitution.

“I’ve discussed it with the Sheriff. Based on what is in the PSA, even though it’s incredibly disturbing and personally offensive and professionally offensive to me, the reality is the comments he made are rather firmly protected by the First Amendment.”

He also said that it was odd no one heard the announcement before now. He acknowledged that Benson is small, and not many people are awake during the hours it was airing.

Lotsof told CNN that the PSA was recorded two years ago. He said it was made “mostly to call attention to Arizona’s extreme laws for child pornography and to try and keep people out of life in prison just for possessing pictures.”

He believes that these laws aren’t helping children and that the material will be manufactured regardless of the law.

Lotsof says he’s an advocate for those who possess child porn, not for the material itself.

“I feel sorry for the people caught with it who are in life in prison as a result. Those people are the real victims and their families.”

McIntyre rebutted Lotsof’s comments about who the real victims are: the children who are featured in child pornography.

“Those are the victims, and so that’s why if you are a consumer — regardless of being a producer of this — in Arizona people like me frankly will seek to put you in prison for the rest of your life.”
The strict sentences that Lotsof is referring to is a law called Sexual Exploitation of a Minor which is a Class 2 felony and carries a minimum of 10 years in prison. Possession of multiple images are considered separate offenses, and each sentence is required to be carried out consecutively. In addition to this, the law denies those convicted the possibility of early release, parole or probation.