Police are investigating how photographs of male high school water polo players ended up on several gay adult Web sites.
Some of the pictures were of boys as young as 14, and were juxtaposed next to photos of nude young men and graphic sexual
content, The Orange County Register reported Saturday.
University of California, Irvine, police confirmed they are investigating whether a dispatcher, Scott Cornelius, photographed high school players for gay-oriented sites.
"We're looking into the matter," Police Chief Paul Henisey said. "We're not exactly sure about what we have or what kinds of issues there are."
Henisey said Cornelius remained on active duty. Cornelius did not respond to requests from the newspaper for comment.
It was not clear if posting the pictures constituted an offense.
"With free speech and photography, there's a gray cloud in terms of what is legal, constitutional," said state Assemblyman Jose Solorio, chairman of the Assembly Public Safety Committee.
Solorio said he would have the committee investigate the matter.
Local parents, coaches and school officials were alarmed that the pictures were posted. Parents said some of the boys were traumatized and sought counseling.
"These kids don't look at what they do as shameful," said Joan Gould, an international water polo official and a spokeswoman for a group of Orange County water polo parents. "For someone to come in and take what these kids are doing and take it out of context and exploit these images, these kids and their schools, because you can see the school name on the caps, is just horrible."
The Register found photos of players from 11 Orange County high
schools and three other Southern California schools on several pages of one gay porn site registered to a London address.
A photo of one polo player adjusting his suit is the subject of several lewd comments on another site.
Information from: The Orange County Register,
(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)