Chesterton Tribune

Portage PD: Girl's nude photos on boy's cell equal child porn charge

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A Portage High School student has been detained on a delinquency charge of possession of child pornography after Portage Police said that his cell phone was found to contain four nude photos of two PHS girls younger than 16.

According to police, at 10:30 a.m. Friday the PHS principal received a call from the mother of one of the girls advising that the student in question, a boy, had threatened to post a nude photo of her daughter to his MySpace page if she refused to loan him something. The boy was brought to the principal’s office and in a search of his phone the PPD School Resource Officer (SRO) found a single nude photo of the woman’s daughter and three other nude photos of a second girl, police said.

The boy advised the SRO that he hadn’t dated either girl and that, while he did not threaten to post the photo to MySpace if she didn’t loan him the item, “he did remind her that he still had the picture,” police said.

In consultation with the Porter County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, the boy was transported to the Juvenile Detention Center on a delinquency charge of possession of child pornography, police said.

Meanwhile, the woman’s daughter advised the SRO that she’s known the boy for six or seven months, that they “never really dated” but she does “like him,” and that “she does not recall how the picture idea came up and (is) not sure if (the boy) showed it to anyone.”

The SRO then interviewed the second girl—three photos of whom were found on the boy’s phone—who admitted to sending pictures of herself to the boy and similar ones to another PHS student, a Hobart High School student, a Chesterton High School student, and possibly to a Lake Station student, police said.

“I asked her why she sent pictures to these boys,” the SRO stated in his report. “She advised that they asked and claims that she has low self-esteem. (The girl) advised that she sent the pictures about a month ago. (The girl) advised she has not asked any of the boys to delete them.”

Police said that the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office will review the SRO’s report “for possible offenses against the juvenile females.”

Posted 4/13/2011