CHICAGO (CBS) — Four suburban teenagers have been arrested on felony charges, for an explicit video they posted on Twitter.
All four students attend Joliet Central High School, and are between the ages of 14 and 16. A 15-year-old girl and three of her classmates recorded consensual sex acts one week ago, and posted the video on Twitter.
The girl’s mother found out about the video, and reported the Twitter post to police, who seized the original recording.
The four teens were arrested Friday, and charged as juveniles with child pornography
Joliet Police Chief Brian Benton said posting the video online made already risky behavior criminal.
“It’s a criminal offense, first of all, to post that type of material online, especially for underage,” Benton said.
Police want the charges against the four students to serve as a cautionary tale to other youths engaged in high-risk behavior.
“The child pornography offense that was charged is in place for a reason, because we don’t want to accept that type of behavior as a society,” Benton said. “It’s making a strong statement, and I think it’s important to do so, to send a message to others that kids shouldn’t be involved in this type of behavior, and hopefully this will serve as a deterrent.”
Benton said such behavior could seriously affect the teens’ lives “for years to come.”
“It’s an incident you may not recover from,” he said.
The teens were being held in the River Valley Juvenile Detention Center in Joliet.
Possible punishments range from probation to being locked up in juvenile detention until the age of 21.
On April 13, a Will County judge will hold a hearing to determine if the teens should stay in juvenile detention, or be released.