Mother facing criminal charges after creating deepfake photos

Parents often say that they would do anything for their children. Of course, most draw a line at certain points before a situation gets out of hand. Unfortunately, some parents may think that they are carrying out actions to help or protect their children, but those actions could result in the harm of someone else. In such cases, parents could end up facing criminal charges. 

It was recently reported that one mother in Pennsylvania was arrested on harassment charges after allegedly engaging in a situation involving her teenage daughter’s cheerleading rivals. Purportedly, the mother attempted to have at least three other teens removed from the cheerleading team by creating deepfake photos and videos of the teens performing questionable activity including: 

  • Smoking 
  • Drinking alcohol 
  • Showing themselves nude or in bikinis 

Messages containing the faked photos and videos were sent to cheerleading coaches and other cheer teammates. One of the victims showed her parents the photos, and her parents contacted the police. Authorities determined that the photos and videos had been digitally altered. The investigation reportedly led authorities to determine that the messages had been sent from the suspect’s home. The woman was taken into custody on charges of harassment and cyber harassment of a child. 

While this mother undoubtedly believed that she was helping her child, she now facing a serious legal predicament. If convicted of the criminal charges, she could be sentenced to time in jail or have other punishment brought against her. It may be in her best interests to gain information from local Pennsylvania legal resources about her legal rights and defense options.