‘Free the Nipple’ attorney promises to sue Utah prosecutors charging woman for being topless in front of stepchildren

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SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News) – The civil rights attorney who represented the “Free the Nipple” movement is now taking on Utah prosecutors. David Lane is promising to sue prosecutors for charging a West Valley City woman for being topless inside of her own home in front of her stepchildren.

“When the government violates your constitution, there are consequences,” Lane told ABC4’s Brittany Johnson.

He said Tilli Buchanan contacted his Colorado-based law firm, Kilmer Lane & Newman, to represent her in the civil rights lawsuit.

In 2017, Buchanan was charged with three counts of lewdness involving a child. Court documents state she “intentionally exposed her breasts to her three stepchildren,” all minors, and, “under circumstances, she knows or should have known would alarm them.”

Buchanan admitted that she exposed her breasts to the children, but says she and her husband had taken off their shirts to hang drywall so they wouldn’t get dirty, then the husband’s kids walked in and saw her.

“They went home and told bio mom, ‘oh you know, stepmom was running around topless’ and bio mom called the cops,” Lane explained.

Lane says he plans to sue Utah prosecutors even if charges, in this case, are eventually dropped.

“Her rights are being violated right now. She is living under the stress and pressure of having to become a registered sex offender in the State of Utah, which is outrageous, for doing something that is constitutional.”

Lane represented two women who sued Fort Collins, Colo.

The two women argued that the city’s ban on females going topless violated their right to equal protection. The 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed with the women, and according to Lane, the ruling applies to every state in the circuit, which includes Utah.

“The 10th circuit said if a man can take off his shirt, in any public place, a woman can do the same. You can’t make a woman a criminal simply because she has done what a man is permitted to do.”

“If you can be topless in public walking down Main Street in Salt Lake City, presumably, you should be able to be topless in your own home,” he added. The state of Utah needs to get their noses out of people’s houses.”

Buchanan’s husband, who also had his shirt off, hasn’t been charged.

“The residents of Utah should storm the city hall of West Valley City with pitchforks and torches and demand that this outrageous prosecution be dropped. It’s going to cost the taxpayers money once we sue. Their civil rights are being violated. This whole thing is outrageous.”

ABC4 reached out to prosecutors in the case and didn’t hear back.

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