Two teenagers from North Carolina were arrested last week after they reportedly tricked their teacher into sending nude pictures and then sharing the explicit pictures with other students.
The Onslow County Sheriff's Office confirmed the pair of 16-year olds, Brian Joshua Anderson and Brittney Rennee Luckenbaugh, have been charged with misdemeanor disclosure of private images.
The teens allegedly tricked David Laughinghouse, a French teacher at Swansboro High School in Swansboro, North Carolina, by creating a fake social media account and posing as an adult, contacting Laughinghouse and initiating ongoing communication with him. Once the teens obtained the nude photos, they shared them with other students around the school.
They were taken into custody last week and then released on $5,000 bail.
"This investigation remains an active one and we are potentially looking for other incidents of catfishing," Sheriff Hans Miller said, according to the Jacksonville Daily News.
"Catfishing" is the term used for internet scammers who pretend to be someone else, usually using other people's photos on social media to create a false identity. The term came from the 2010 movie "Catfish," a documentary about a man who was engaged in a long-distance relationship with a woman he met online, who turned out to be using a false identity and fake pictures. One of the cast members relayed the story of catfish being shipped from North America to Asia, where the fish were shipped with cod to keep all of them active and maintained the quality of the catfish. The analogy was a comparison of the catfish to people appearing in others' lives to keep them active and alert, especially while spending time on social media.