CUMBERLAND COUNTY, N.C. (WTVD) -- Sexting is on the rise in North Carolina and recent studies show as many as 15 percent of young people have sent nude photos or video.
The Cumberland County Sheriffs Office have already investigated more than a dozen sexting incidents since the start of the school year.
"We're more aware of what's happening, and we are getting more reports. We have the younger people more tech bound, and have greater access to what they need to do this type of thing," Sgt. Sean Swain told ABC11.
He says many of the incidents investigated involved middle school students, including a 12-year-old girl who had nude pictures on her cell phone.
Another teen filmed a classmate undressing in a school locker room.
Investigators say several of the illicit pictures didn't rise to the level of a felony crime. Swain said authorities believe those involved didn't realize the ramifications of what they had done.
He said parents need to constantly check their teen's mobile devices.
One parent told ABC11 that she's talked to her daughter, but all she can do is ask and trust her daughter is doing the right thing, "until she gives me a reason not to."
Authorities said students can face disciplinary punishment at school.
The schools and the sheriff's office both have programs to educate students on the dangers and penalties of sexting.
Click here for info from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
Click here for the Cumberland County Sheriff's Office
Click here for the Fayetteville Police Department
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Cumberland County deputies warn young people about about dangers of sexting