The top prosecutor in Los Angeles announced Friday that he had filed criminal charges against a former Playboy Playmate who allegedly took disparaging nude photographs of a 70-year-old woman while in the shower room at a local gym earlier this year.
The model, Dani Mathers, is reported to have taken the photo of the woman in July 2016. She then posted it to Snapchat with the caption: “If I can’t unsee this then you can’t either.”
Mathers was charged with one count of invasion of privacy and could face up to six months in jail if she is convicted. She did not respond to Ars’ request for comment on Saturday.
As a result of the alleged incident, Mathers was banned from all LA Fitness locations. She eventually deleted the Snapchat message and publicly apologized.
In the clip posted to her Snapchat Story, she said:
I just want to acknowledge a photo that I accidentally posted. It was absolutely wrong and not what I meant to do. I chose to do what I do for a living because I love the female body and I know body shaming is wrong, that’s not what I’m about and this is not the type of person I am.
Mathers claimed at the time that she was “new to Snapchat” and meant the picture to simply be part of a “personal conversation.”
“I know I have upset a lot of people out there but please believe me this is not the type of person that I am,” she added. “I have never done this before, and I will never do this again. You have my word.”
In a statement, City Attorney Mike Feuer said that “body shaming is humiliating.”
“What really matters is our character and humanity,” he added. “While body shaming, in itself, is not a crime, there are circumstances in which invading one’s privacy to accomplish it can be. And we shouldn’t tolerate that.”
Jay Leiderman, a Ventura, California-based lawyer, who has defended a number of criminal computer crime suspects, said that he had never encountered a “set of facts” quite like the Mathers case.
“It’s a particularly good example of the future of privacy on the Internet and prosecutions,” he told Ars.