November 9, 2015
Colorado Sexting Scandal: 100 Canon City High School Students Could Face Felony Charges

The Colorado sexting scandal at Canon City High School could cause 100 students to face felony charges. A police investigation into the sexting issue at the school was prompted after a tip that minors were sharing explicit photos of themselves, often using "ghost apps" to hide the nude photos from their parents.

According to a Fox News report about the Colorado sexting scandal, Canon City police officials have warned parents to review the cell phone usage of their teenagers to see if their child has also engaged in sexting by sending explicit selfies. The police investigators urged parents that quick action might prevent the nude or nearly nude photos of their minor children from being posted to the internet or becoming public.

Canon City High School Superintendent George Welsh has not stated how many student are being investigated as a part of the sexting scandal, MSN reports. Numerous students have been suspended from the high school due to their alleged involvement in the explicit images sharing via their smartphones. Welsh said the school will not release the names of the students in an effort to protect their privacy.

Police Chief Paul Schultz said that Colorado school district officials turned the cell phone of one student into his department after receiving a phone call tip about the sexting problem. Upon reviewing the phone, the officers found "several hundred" photos that prompted the investigation. Efforts to identify all the students involved with sending the explicit photos remains ongoing.

So many football players were among those suspended in the sexting scandal that the final game of the season had to be forfeited. Both male and female students from Canon City High School have reportedly been involved in the sexting that prompted the suspensions.

A police bulletin given to parents offered details about the apps, which can be used to hide photos on a cell phone. The notice from the Colorado police also strongly urged parents to discuss the risk that any sexting photo send to a significant other can wind up on the internet forever and criminal charges could be filed due to the sharing of the pornographic images of minors.

A hotline has been created for use by Canon City High School students who are concerned about getting suspended or facing criminal charges for sexting. According to statements made to the media by Superintendent Welsh, some of the students involved in the sexting scandal could face legal charges or serious consequences. The local prosecuting attorney's office has stated that "common sense" will be used when decisions about levying criminal charges are made.

District Attorney Thom LeDoux said he would take into consideration whether or not any of the Colorado sexting teens was coerced into sharing photos. LeDoux also said the possible involvement of any adults, as well as if sexual contact corresponded to the images, would also be factors reviewed during the potential legal charges process.

Possession of explicit photos of minors is a felony in Colorado. The stiff penalties associated with the sharing of nude or nearly nude photos of minors laws were written to protect children from sexual predators -- before the birth of the smartphone.

If convicted of sharing explicit photos a minor, the Colorado sexting scandals participants would be required to register as sex offenders for the rest of their lives. LeDoux said he would levy the felony charges if doing so was in the "best interest of the community" and if exploited victims emerged.

What do you think about the Colorado sexting scandal and the trend of teens sending nude photos on their cell phones?

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