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Police Investigate Anonymous Sewickley Gossip Twitter Account

Edgeworth police said the investigation is ongoing.

An investigation is ongoing regarding a Twitter feed created to spread student gossip in Sewickley, according to Edgeworth police.

Edgeworth police said no one has been named or charged at this point, but the investigation is not over.

The Twitter handle @SewickleyGossip has since been taken down following an inappropriate incident last week that led local school officials to contact the police and the FBI.

Mandi Semple, Sewickley Academy spokeswoman, said administrators learned in August that someone was posting inappropriate content about Sewickley minors.

The anonymous person was asking students via the social media network to send gossip that would then be disseminated on Twitter. Last week, the anonymous account holder crossed the line and posted a tweet claiming to have received a nude photo of an underage girl, authorities said.

Semple said local police and the FBI were notified, along with the Allegheny County Department of Child Protective Services.

Semple said an announcement was made about the account to Senior School students the morning of Sept. 28. About 20 minutes later, all posts had been removed and the account taken down, she said.

The school also sent a letter to parents explaining the situation.

Quaker Valley spokeswoman Tina Vojtko said the district found out about the account after an anonymous person called the school hotline. Vojtko said school officials took a look and found the graphic content to be “alarming.”

Vojtko said the district immediately reported the matter to police and notified Sewickley Academy.

“We felt compelled to call Sewickley Academy, and they had already known about it,” she said.

Semple said school officials are unsure if the account-holder attends Sewickley Academy.

"There's no way to tell who was doing it," she said.

John Linko October 06, 2012 at 12:20 AM
An unfortunate but not unexpected consequence of the age of social media. Not that different from when I went to SA and QV, except that the electronic permanence and omnipresence of the Internet has replaced mean-spirited whispers and notes. QV sounds like it is treading carefully, which is smart as they really can't do anything in an official capacity about otherwise legal communications occurring off campus on non-school owned equipment. Being a private entity, SA can largely dictate the behavior of its students and employees irrespective of constitutional protections.
Guy Sewickley October 08, 2012 at 02:53 AM
Too bad the site was deleted. I wanted to see what those kids were saying.
travis w October 08, 2012 at 06:19 PM
@Larissa could you provide us updates as if anyone is charged? This seems to be a huge deal in the high school, my son keeps talking about it at dinner and there seems to be a new one about the latest gossip
Larissa Dudkiewicz October 08, 2012 at 06:24 PM
You mean there's a new Twitter handle or something else? Yes, I'll keep you posted as best as I can.
travis w October 10, 2012 at 12:58 AM
Apparently there is a new one, but its private.

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