CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — A high school student who went through his teacher’s cellphone, found a nude picture of her and posted it online has been charged with a computer crime and voyeurism, authorities said Friday.
Union Public Safety Department Chief Sam White said the student, who is being charged as a juvenile, was taken into custody at Union High School without incident.
The 16-year-old is charged with a count of violating the state’s computer crime act in the second degree and a count of aggravated voyeurism.
He is being held in juvenile detention for a hearing in family court. There have been no other arrests, but the investigation is continuing, the chief said.
Officials say it’s not clear how many people may have seen the social media postings of the photo.
The teacher, Leigh Anne Arthur, has quit her job teaching mechanical and electrical engineering and computer programming at the school’s vocational center.
Arthur, 33, told police on Feb. 18 that while she stepped out of her classroom, a boy took her unlocked smartphone from her desk, opened the photos application and found a nude selfie she had taken for her husband as a Valentine’s Day present.
An online petition has been started, urging school district officials in the community in northwestern South Carolina to give Arthur her job back. The superintendent has said it was the teacher’s fault for leaving students unattended during a four-minute break between classes.
The Associated Press left a phone message with Arthur on Friday seeking comment on the arrest.
The voyeurism charge makes it illegal, for the purpose of sexual gratification, to record or make a digital file of another person without his or her consent. The computer crimes charge makes it illegal to take possession or deprive the owner of a computer of computer data.
Both charges are misdemeanors for a first offense. But if the teen is convicted on both counts he could be sentenced to a maximum fine of $10,500 and four years in prison.