crimesider

Ex-High School Student Sues Over Racy Cell Phone Sexting Pictures

(CBS/iStockphoto)
ALLENTOWN, Pa. (CBS/AP) A former Pennsylvania high school student says the nude pictures she took of herself with her cell phone were "not meant for anyone else's eyes" ...except, perhaps, those of her long-time boyfriend.

But she says when a high school principal confiscated the phone, he turned it over to a prosecutor who threatened to file felony child pornography charges against the girl unless she took a class on sexual violence.

"This search was much farther than what the law allows," Valerie Burch, an attorney for the ACLU of Pennsylvania, told CNN. "There was no reason to go looking for these pictures on her phone, and unless you have a very good reason, you can't go through someone's private things. We think it is a grave violation of her privacy."

As she filed a lawsuit against the school district Thursday, she said she was "absolutely horrified and humiliated to learn that school officials, men in (the) DA's office, and police had seen naked pictures of me.

"Those pictures were extremely private and not meant for anyone else's eyes. What they did is the equivalent of spying on me through my bedroom window," she said in a statement released by the ACLU which is representing her.

The girl is now 19-years-old, and was 17 when the pictures were taken.

The school district was at the center of the nation's first criminal case to reach a federal appeals court involving "sexting."

For those who aren't in the know, "sexting" is the practice of sending explicit photos via text message.

The court ruled in March that prosecutors couldn't charge a teenage girl who appeared in a photo similar to the one involved in this lawsuit.

What do you think? Did the school have a right to show the pictures to police or was high school student stripped of her rights?


  • Edecio Martinez

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