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March 28, 2015

Police, D.A. investigating nude photo allegations at North Penn High

Education Police
03282015_north_penn_high_school_BM Source/Bing Maps

North Penn High School in Towamencin Township, Montgomery County.

Police in Towamencin Township and the Montgomery County District Attorney's Office are investigating allegations that boys at North Penn High School were posting online photos of nude and partially-dressed female classmates, 6ABC reported.

According to the 6ABC report, which cited anonymous students, several students were involved in what started as a group chat to trade nude photos like Pokemon cards, and led to the posting of photos of girls at the school on multiple Dropbox accounts.

In an unsigned statement from the North Penn School District, linked off the district home page under the headline "Important message for NPHS Families," the district said:

"This week, NPSD administration came to understand that there is considerable discussion among some high school students about allegations that students of our school community may have shared inappropriate pictures and videos via an online format. Please know that NPSD and local law enforcement officials are working together on this matter and take alleged activities such as these very seriously. Please know that investigations such as these often take time to thoroughly complete. It is very important that anyone with any knowledge, which would contribute to an investigation of such activity directly, contact his or her local police department. Also, please join us in reminding your student the importance of not becoming involved in the online sharing of inappropriate content."

But a group of girls at the school is rallying around the alleged victims, creating a page on the Tumblr blogging platform to criticize the district's handling of the incident so far. They are calling for a student walkout on Monday.

Posts to the Twitter account @npwalkout2015, created Friday, say the walkout is scheduled for 11:15 a.m., during the fifth period of classes.

According to the Tumblr page:

"...we’re doing this walkout to help the victims. To let them know we support them and to stop the slut shaming - the victim blaming. Already it’s started with girls going home CRYING because they’re getting things shouted to them in the hall. People saying s--t like “oh well if they didn’t want the pictures posted they shouldn’t have sent them.” And our school will NOT. STEP. IN."

The author of the page also alleges:

"The police are already involved with the case but our principal has said NOTHING to the students. No announcements over the intercom, no assembly, nothing. 

"As you can also see, my school’s done a DREADFUL job addressing the topic."

PhillyVoice reached out early Saturday morning to North Penn High School principal Burt Hynes via email for comment on the allegations, and will update this story as necessary.