Nude photos were shared on the social media app Snapchat, and now two students at a Slidell, Louisiana elementary school face child pornography charges, according to police.
A girl had sent the pictures to a boy, who then used Snapchat to share them with other students at Bonne Ecole Elementary School, which has students from Pre-K to sixth grade, police said, NOLA.com reported.
Officials at the school contacted police after they learned that the boy had the photos of the girl on his phone, police said, WDSU reported. Both the boy and girl were arrested Wednesday on charges of distribution of child pornography.
The children were released to their parents, FOX 8 said.
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“Most kids are not aware, but sending a nude photo of themselves is a crime,” said police Chief Randy Fandal, reported FOX 8. “Parents need to have a candid conversation with their kids about the seriousness, and the long term effects, of taking and sending nude photographs.”
A spokeswoman told NOLA.com the district won’t comment due to student privacy laws. Police aren’t releasing the students’ ages or grades to protect their privacy as juveniles.
Snapchat has played a role in several child pornography cases. A 17-year-old high school student was charged in Oklahoma earlier this year after authorities say he posted nude photos of students on a Snapchat page and tried to blackmail school officials when they turned off the school’s Wi-Fi access, Associated Press reported.
There are multiple cases in which the popular app, with its disappearing messages, has allegedly been used by pedophiles to sexually exploit children and teens, Bloomberg reported in November. The company said that it works closely with law enforcement to address such issues, the publication reported.