MEDICAL LAKE, Wash. -- The Spokane County Sheriff's office is continuing to investigate reports of teenagers at Medical Lake High School selling and distributing nude photos.
Court documents show a teenager at the school was recruiting other boys to get naked photos of their classmates for him to sell. According to those documents, that student would then upload the photos onto a Google Drive. He would charge other classmates $10 to get the email address and password for that account. Court documents said the girls in the photos were between 15 and 18-years-old.
Police have a warrant for that Google account but no students have been arrested.
Unfortunately, these types of incidents are not uncommon. Spokane police officer Jenn DeRuwe said some teens have a mindset that sending and receiving nude pictures from other teens is harmless. The officer works with teens regularly and when she talks with them one issue that comes up is sexting. She said teens seem to be looking for attention and acceptance.
"So, they come to school and they do what ever they can to get that peer attention it seems like the trend right now is to share photos, to share nudes, to share different sexy photos and what they don't realize and what they don't understand is that can be pornography and than can come with a heft penalty," DeRuwe said.
Sharing explicit photos of a minor is a felony in Washington state. But it is not just the possible legal trouble teens should think about DeRuwe said.
"The bully and the ruining of reputations and what this says about you is where these kids are going and that's really what's more detrimental in my opinion,” DeRuwe said. "You don't want other people to see these pictures of you and once they go out into the internet who knows how they are going to be used."
To keep this from happening, law enforcement urges teens to think twice before hitting send. Deruwe adds that the best things parents can do is talk to their kids about sexting and check their phones, computers and devices regularly.
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