Man gets year of probation for sharing nude photos of ex


LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — A man originally charged with 20 counts of violating Nevada’s revenge porn law, who police said shared hundreds of intimate images of his ex-girlfriend, accepted a plea deal of “attempted unlawful dissemination of a personal image” and walked away with one year of probation.

His ex-girlfriend said she is the one who must live with the consequences, sentenced to a lifetime of shame.

Lawmakers passed the so-called revenge porn law in 2015, making it a crime “to harass, harm or terrorize another person” when “(that) person electronically disseminates or sells an intimate image, which depicts the other person” without their consent.

On May 12, as part of a plea deal negotiated with the Clark County District Attorney’s Office, Donald Amick, 43, agreed to the lesser charge and one year of probation.

Police began their investigation into Amick in late 2020 after his ex-girlfriend filed a report.

“I will never be the person who I was before,” she said. While intimate photos of her crisscross the internet, she asked for her face to be blurred and her name redacted for this story. “I will never have that secure feeling.”

Amick and his ex-girlfriend dated from September 2019 to June 2020 after meeting on the dating app Bumble, court documents said.

“The relationship became sexual almost immediately and Donald began to tell (his ex-girlfriend) that he had certain fetishes,” police wrote in the warrant for Amick’s arrest. “(The ex-girlfriend) stated within weeks of starting their relationship Donald began to demand photographs of (her) nude and during sex and stated it would allow Donald to trust (her) and strengthen their relationship. (She) consented to photographs and videos to be taken of her and Donald during sexual intercourse.”

But it did not stop there.

The photography “escalated to the point that Donald would take nude photographs of (her) during normal everyday activities such as using the bathroom, showering or driving,” police said.

She broke off the relationship in June 2020 and in October 2020 discovered “Donald had disseminated (hundreds) of nude photographs of her, sexual photographs of her and images and videos of her having sex with Donald to other people utilizing Kik, MeWe, Tumblr, Facebook, Snapchat, Google, Yahoo and Twitter,” police said.

She also learned Amick was messaging other people, claiming to be a woman named “Ashley,” police said.

In November 2020, Amick’s ex-girlfriend reported her allegations to Las Vegas Metro Police. She came “with a binder she compiled that contained a multitude of messages and photographs and screenshots of sexual videos that showed (her) buttocks, vagina, anus and breasts, that had been disseminated among various sites, applications, e-mail addresses and group messaging forums,” police said.

Prior to the start of the criminal investigation, Amick’s ex-girlfriend had discovered more than 100 photos, police said. As part of their investigation, police said they discovered 48 intimate photos where her face was “readily identifiable.”

Investigators filed search warrants with the social media companies, finding photos and messages on several accounts they said belonged to Amick and that had been verified through emails and phone numbers registered in his name, court documents said.

On Facebook alone, police said they discovered more than “14,000 images that had been disseminated and over 2,000 videos” of several people, including more than 100 images where Amick’s ex-girlfriend was “positivity identified,” police said.

In their warrant for Amick’s arrest filed in February 2021, an investigator wrote there was “probable cause to arrest Donald for 48 counts of unlawful dissemination of intimate images of another.” The warrant specifies while investigators “located (hundreds) of nude or sexual images” of Amick’s ex-girlfriend, the 48 counts relate to “48 separate occasions … based on the images (and) records of (them) being disseminated” per the revenge porn law.

“There were just so many accounts — fake people he pretended to be,” Amick’s ex-girlfriend said.

A criminal complaint filed in March 2021 indicates Amick was charged with five counts — not 48 counts — of unlawful dissemination of an intimate image. However, an amended complaint filed in justice court in September increased the number to 20 counts.

Missouri State Highway Patrol arrested Amick in April 2021 after a traffic stop. A trooper ran Amick’s information, finding the warrant for his arrest out of Las Vegas. Amick was handcuffed and taken to jail, records from police in Missouri indicate.

“The defendant only gets probation and I have the fear that all of these images will continue to be shared endless times and have endless opportunities to come to the surface again.”

Donald Amick’s ex-girlfriend speaking in court during sentencing

Police in Missouri declined to release more details, including body camera video and a booking photo.

In April 2021, Judge Joseph Sciscento granted Amick’s release from the Clark County Detention Center without having to pay bail. He ordered Amick not to contact his ex-girlfriend.

“Forcing Donald to remain in pre-trial confinement in light of the COVID-19 pandemic presents an unnecessary and unjustified additional risk,” Amick’s attorney, Kyle Cottner, wrote in a declaration filed with the court. “While Donald is not currently a resident of Nevada, he has every intention of returning to make any and all necessary court appearances.”

While awaiting his court appearances, Amick’s ex-girlfriend said she received messages and phone calls from strangers. One message, she said, came from a California-based escort service attempting to set up a meeting.

In September 2021, prosecutors filed a motion to bring Amick back to jail and hold him on $100,000 bail for violating the conditions of his release. Prosecutors said Amick was using social media websites just one day after a judge ordered him to stay off social media. The judge denied the request.

Amick waived his right to a preliminary hearing and the case moved up to the Eighth District Judicial Court in January. In the move from Justice Court to District Court, prosecutors and Amick’s attorney worked out a deal to charge him with one count of attempted unlawful dissemination of an intimate image of another —dropping all felonies.

The deal would mean a guilty plea and no trial.

Amick accepted the plea on Jan. 13, agreeing to a sentence of one-year probation. The plea agreement also requires Amick to stay off social media and not have contact with his ex-girlfriend.

Judge Jerry Wiese formally sentenced Amick per the terms of the deal on May 12. Because the agreement was made between both parties and there was no spectrum in the sentence, Wiese did not have any say in punishment.

“The defendant only gets probation and I have the fear that all of these images will continue to be shared endless times and have endless opportunities to come to the surface again,” Amick’s ex-girlfriend told the court before the sentencing.

Working in the service industry, she fears being alone in a small room with a stranger.

“There are so many times when I don’t want to take a male customer, because, is it the person that found me and reached out to me? Is this going to be the moment?” she said.

Nevada passed its revenge porn law in 2015 as part of a wider omnibus crime bill under former Republican Attorney General Adam Laxalt. Laura Tucker, a senior deputy attorney general, testified before a legislative committee about the provisions of the proposed law.

“The prosecutor would have to prove behind a reasonable doubt that the person acted with the intent to annoy, harass, terrorize or alarm the person who is in the photo,” Tucker told the committee in 2015.

The intent, according to a 2015 document from the attorney general’s office, was to make violating the law a Category C felony, which can carry a prison sentence of up to 5 years and a $10,000 fine. Lawmakers instead made a violation a Category D felony, which carries a smaller fine and a maximum 4-year sentence.

“A Category D felony is not an automatically probational offense, which means there should be actual time, prison time, associated with this,” Chief Deputy Attorney General Mark Krueger said.

The Nevada Attorney General’s Office has no control over prosecutors’ plea deals or judges’ sentences. The office has taken on its own revenge porn proceedings, most notably the case against

Working with the Federal Trade Commission, the state successfully shut down the revenge porn website, where people could “(post) intimate images of people, together with their personal information, without their consent,” officials wrote in a news release in 2018.

After leaving court on May 12, Amick returned to Missouri, his ex-girlfriend said.

“I’ve only had nightmares that I have talked to him,” his ex-girlfriend said.

While Amick must stay off social media, for now, his ex-girlfriend said while not ordered to, she will too.

“I have just gone completely silent on social media because I feel so taken advantage of,” she said. “I just feel so dirty from it all that I just don’t want any part, so I’d rather be invisible.”

KLAS reached out to Judge Wiese about the outcome of the case. A court spokesperson said it would be inappropriate for him to comment.

The Clark County District Attorney’s Office declined an on-camera interview but said there were issues with the evidence in the case and that, as in any criminal matter, prosecutors could have taken the proceeding to a jury and lost.

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