RALEIGH, N.C. -- Officials have confirmed an SBI probe into nude photos being shared on Instagram amongst high school students has expanded to 9 counties across the state.
Attorney General Roy Cooper made the announcement on Wednesday. The purported photos were shared on Instagram.
The investigation includes Randolph, Surry, Wake, Durham, Pitt, Johnson, Craven, Chatham and Edgecombe counties.
Officials in Surry County said their investigation involves a student at North Surry High School.
Cooper said it's important for parents to talk with their kids about taking and sharing explicit photos online.
"The State Bureau of Investigation Computer Crimes Unit is working in conjunction with multiple local law enforcement agencies to investigate inappropriate photos of underage North Carolina students found on Instagram. To date, the SBI has identified more than 30 accounts as potential violators," said a spokeswoman for Attorney General Roy Cooper.
Last week, the investigation expanded beyond the Raleigh area. Wake Forest police said last week that a teen’s mother reported that someone had posted nude pictures of her daughter online. After that, two girls contacted the Durham County Sheriff’s Office to report that they had been victims also.
A Davidson County teen told FOX8 about how she regrets posting a nude photo on Instagram.
“This is the most embarrassing thing that’s ever happened to me,” said Kelsey Roberts. “I would never put anyone through this or want anyone else to go through this.”
Davidson County was not listed in the SBI investigation. A spokeswoman for Attorney General Roy Cooper said "the SBI Computer Crimes Unit has not been contacted by local law enforcement in Davidson County but stands ready to assist them upon request."
No arrests have been made in the case.
The following law enforcement agencies are currently involved in the investigation: Wake Forest Police, Cary Police, Raleigh Police, Durham Police, Havelock Police, Chatham Co. Sheriff’s Dept., Pitt Co. Sheriff’s Dept., Surry Co. Sheriff’s Dept., Edgecombe Co. Sheriff’s Dept., and the Randolph Co. Sheriff’s Dept.
Distributing nude photos of minors is a felony and could result in up to a year of jail time. Parents or anyone with information about this case should send an e-mail to Ops-Center@ncdoj.gov.