FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — The Fort St John RCMP have recently learned from the BC Integrated Child Exploitation unit that several local teens may have been victims of extortion where they provided intimate photos of themselves to a person posing as a friend online, and are asking for victims to come forward.
In a release today, RCMP Sgt. Dave Tyreman said that while some residents have told police about the allegations, investigators believe that there may be more victims that have not yet come forward. Parents are asked to speak with their school-age children to find out if they have recently shared intimate photos with someone on the internet, through their cell phones, or if they have been approached to do so. Investigative efforts to identify the person responsible are continuing.
“We can never be too internet safe,” said Sgt. Tyreman. “As parents, we need to always know what our children are doing on all of their electronic devices. We would encourage all parents to speak to their children about these incidents to help educate them about the dangers of sharing photos online.”
Police want everyone to know that possession or circulation of intimate pictures of anyone under the age of eighteen is considered a criminal offence related to child pornography, criminal harassment, or even luring a child.
Anyone with information about the alleged offences is asked to call the Fort St. John RCMP at (250) 787-8100, or Crime Stoppers 1 (800) 222-8477 (TIPS).