On Thursday new details started to emerge as to how Eisenhower Middle School officials became aware that were circulating through the school, just as a temporary amnesty period for possession of the nude pictures came to an end.
Anyone now caught in possession of those pictures will face child pornography charges, Wyckoff Police Chief Benjamin Fox told Patch on Thursday."
Anyone caught with those images still on their phones will be arrested and charged. We're talking child pornography charges," Fox said. "It's serious and you don't want to go there."
On Thursday Fox told Patch that the issue first came to attention when the girlfriends of the boys that originally received the image confronted the 13-year-old student.
"Some girls learned that their boyfriends had the picture and then there was an argument between those girls and the girl that was involved," Fox said. "That was overheard by the staff and they investigated and ultimately learned what had taken place."
The Eisenhower Middle School sexting scandal first reported on Patch Tuesday went viral Wednesday evening as multiple television news networks descended on Wyckoff reporting on the 13-year-old Eisenhower Middle School student who took nude pictures of herself and then emailed them to two teen boys.
The images were circulated and may have been viewed by dozens of students, according to police.Fox offered a 48-hour amnesty period on Tuesday allowing anyone in possession of the images to immediately delete them without further repercussions.
As far as how the police department will go about enforcing the ban of the image, Fox conceded they have some limitations.
"We say you can't have the images so the question is now what are we going to do about it. The answer is there's not a lot we can do at this juncture. It's illegal for us to start conducting searches of phones. There's no lawful way for us to go about that," Fox said. "But...law enforcement learns things. People tell us things. And if we learn those images are still out being kept or distributed we will press charges. But we're not searching phones. We can't."
Eisenhower principal Stephen Raimo said Eisenhower had a similar sexting incident in 2008. The police department also offered an amnesty pact in that case and there were no arrests.