February 5, 2018
Investigators with the Bedford County Sheriff’s Office, assigned to the Southern Virginia Internet Crimes
Against Children Task Force, are aware of a viral Facebook video, depicting the sexual abuse of an African-
American child, by an adult African-American male. This video is being shared via Facebook, and has been
reported to the Task Force by residents in the Central Virginia area. This video is in most cases being shared
in an attempt to identify the victim and the offender. While authorities acknowledge and appreciate the
public’s wanting to identify these subjects, they want to ask the public to please refrain from sharing this, or
similar, videos or pictures, for the following reasons:
• Sharing the video is a violation of the Code of VA 18.2-374.1:1, Distribution of Child Pornography. While
the intent may be good, in trying to identify the victim and offender, it is still distribution of child
pornography, and is a felony.
• Each share victimizes the child again!
• With the open nature of Facebook (and social media in general), sharing of this (or any other type of
sexually explicit content) increases the risk of other children being exposed to this material, which can
create a host of emotional and mental issues for the child who sees it. You may create more victims, by
sharing this type of material.
• Facebook, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), and all ICAC Task Forces
across the United States are aware of this video, and are actively working to identify the victim and
• Facebook is tracking the spread of the video on their network, and will most likely terminate your account
for violating their Terms of Service by sharing child pornography. You will most likely lose any personal
content in your account, to include private messages, wall posts, personal pictures and videos, etc
• By federal law, Facebook must report every user who posts, shares, distributes, etc, any known or
suspected child sexual exploitation material, to NCMEC. NCMEC will then forward those reports to the
appropriate law enforcement authority for further investigation. Members of the public who share this
video, may have law enforcement execute a search warrant at their residence, and have all electronic
devices seized for examination, with possible forfeiture of any device this video is on. In addition, they
may face criminal charges for distribution and possession of child pornography. Having to investigate and
follow-up on each of the previously mentioned reports, uses valuable investigative resources, that could
be used to investigate other offenses against children.
• If someone shares this video and you see it, report it to Facebook. Do not share it, comment on it, etc.
Each share will create more work for law enforcement, and puts you at risk.
Again, law enforcement wants to thank the members of our community for their desire to help protect children,
especially from this type of abuse, but wanted to highlight how in a situation such as this, the desire to help can
actually hurt you, other children, the victim herself, and law enforcement capability to investigate this offense.