16-Year-Old Girl Faces Pornography Charges for Racy Selfie

I'm soooo glad there was no social media around when I was a teen. While I was a pretty good kid who probably wouldn't have gone as far as some of them do, I did have my moments. Like that time I took a picture of my 12-year-old self in hot pants, sprawled out on my family's couch, giving what I thought was a seductive look to the camera. I then sent it to a rock star I worshipped at the time. It got sent back from some reason, and mortifyingly it was an elderly relative of mine who received the letter, opened it, and saw my "child pornography." Nowadays, instead of just having a memory so cringeworthy I still get tingles of embarrassment decades later, I'd probably get arrested. For if you're a kid who takes sexy selfies -- and who knows why kids do these things, not all of them even have a clue what sex is -- there's a good chance you can get arrested for distributing child pornography. Just like a 16-year-old girl in Virginia did.

The girl reportedly took some nude pics of herself and put them on Twitter. I'm telling you, these kids, they've grown up with Twitter. They simply do not understand that it's public -- or, if they do, the word "public" doesn't mean the same thing to them that it does to you and me. They think social media exists inside their head.

Anyway, someone tipped off the cops and she was arrested in charges of distributing child pornography. She also apparently sent them to a couple of boys at her school via her cellphone. If these teens passed the photos along, they too could be arrested. No word on whether they will be arrested for looking at them.

Sounds like the girl could use some counseling (why does she feel she needs everyone to see her naked?) but arrested? Since she will be charged as a juvenile she will apparently not have to register as a sex offender -- and good thing because that would follow her around forever. She wouldn't be able to get certain types of jobs, not live in certain areas.

Parents need to talk to their kids about the severe consequences of this kind of thing -- but whatever happened to a warning? Do we just jump to an arrest on with such a serious charge now?

More From The Stir: Teen Faces Child Pornography Charges for Taking Racy Photo of Herself

It's natural for kids and teens to be curious about sex and their sexuality and their sexual power. What isn't "natural" is the Internet -- whatever naked photos they may regret 10 years later could be out there forever. So teens definitely need a lesson in keeping these things private.

But child pornography charges are nothing to take lightly. Surely, there could be some lesser charge for her. Like maybe assault with a stupid weapon?

Do you think she should have been arrested?


Image via Frederic Cirou/Corbis

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nonmember avatar blue

GOOD. Maybe, this will cause stupid kids to actually think about what they are doing. The origin of the picture doesn't matter. Sending nude pictures of an underage person to someone else, is illegal. Kids NEED to know this and understand it.

adamat34 adamat34

Stupid stupid stupid Not sure if I agree with being arrested but this sets a good example that this is not ok at any age really .

Bobbie Scherzer

If it took getting arrested for her to learn her lesson, good.  Some kids do not respond well to a warning.  They need to make the mistake themselves and then learn.  I don't think she should be put on the sex offender list, but I do hope the jail time did her some good.

SRTmo... SRTmom6127

I'm with all of you (so far), GOOD!! I think that kids all have so much more freedom with the smart phones and internet access that they need to know that they come with responsibilities as well. I don't want to see her on the sex offenders website, but I want her and all her little friends, and Facebook and Twitter and any other social media website that teenagers post themselves on to be made aware that if you do this, you should and will be made accountable. 

sassy... sassykat122

The warning is the countless stories on the news about kids who get in trouble for this. How awful would this girl feel if the police showed up at her door saying a child molester had her picture because her "friends" kept passing it around? The girl won't be pegged as a sex offender and once she turns 18 it shouldn't be on her file. I just don't get why people aren't putting the fear of god in their kids about posting pictures. I get that kids will be stupid, don't be stupid with a camera around at least!

Jespren Jespren

Kidddy porn is kiddy porn. If a 6 year old did it, i'd say he probably lacked the requisit knowledge to know that nekkid pic was a bad idea. If a 12 year old did it *maybe* I'd buy 'bad judgement' or innocent 'experimentation'. But a 16 year old? She was what? Raised on the far side of the moon that she didn't know naked pictures of children is illegal kiddy porn? Didn't know that *sending* pornography to a public hub was illegal? She got caught making and distributing child pornography, since it was her own body I'm glad she won't go onto a sex offenders list, but I certainly hope she gets a serious wake up call and more than a slap on the wrist. The kind of stupid that does that isn't the 'cute' kind.

sassy... sassykat122

and point of fact, it's far different taking a picture in your "sexy" clothes than taking a picture of your underage private parts despite being repeatedly told underage nudity is child porn.

crunc... crunchymomma87

the article said it was due to the vulgarity of the pictures that she was charged with child porn...

So she wasn't just standing there naked like playboy, but letting it all hang out like penthouse. Gotcha.

I was a stupid, insecure kid. I did something this stupid when I was younger(maybe 14?), granted it was sending person to person to my "boyfriend" on the internet who then sent them to all my family. EMBARASSING! But I learned my lesson the hard way, as my parents were internet illiterate and never told us the dangers of it.

But I'm glad I wasn't arrested.... since it won't follow her to adulthood, I think it's a valuable lesson for ALL teens to see the amount of trouble she's getting in as an example. I'd just hate to have to be that example.

nonmember avatar Nic

So here's my issue with this... While I absolutely don't think it's right and am glad she will be learning a hard lesson a hard way, at 16 this girl can have consensual sex in Virginia. Thank god the internet and smartphones weren't around when I was this age because at 17 I was dating much older guys and definitely did not see myself as a child anymore. I still send naughty pics to my husband now, and if I had the tools back then, I probably would have back then sent stuff to my boyfriend. It just seems that unless the boys told her NOT to send these photos and she full well knew she took them, etc. then how is this any different than consensual sex? Is it really child exploitation if she did know the potential consequences but took them anyways?

Trick... Trickychic

I am always lecturing my teen the dangers of sending or posting provocative photos.  I told her she could be arrested for taking them or distributing them.  There is a local high school here where dozens of teens pictures showed up on a social website. There were pictures of victims from 12 to adult. And they believe there are even more from other locations. The two responsible for this site are under investigation now.

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