We first broke this story in April of 2017, after an undercover investigation by Onslow County School Board of Education into Swansboro High School Teacher David Laughinghouse, a foreign language teacher was conducted Laughinghouse was suspended with pay at the time of April 21, 2017. The suspension and the investigation came after alleged nude pictures of Mr. Laughinghouse were shared throughout Swansboro High School amongst other students. During the initial investigation, it was rumored that students from the high school “Cat-Fished” another person by claiming to be them, and they wasn’t, then began conversating with Mr. Laughing house on an app called “Grindr”.
Laughinghouse, after conversing for a while with the account portrayed as a “19-year-old” man, according to court documents, then sent three nude photos of himself to the students behind the account, then shared it with a friend, who then sent the photos to five other students. Officials suspended Laughinghouse and removed his name plaque from his classroom door.
Now, nearly 10 months later, one of the students accused of setting up the “Grindr” account to protect her friend, has been found “NOT GUILTY” to the charges of misdemeanor disclosure of private images.
Brittney Renee Luckenbaugh, 16, of Elm Drive, charged with misdemeanor disclosure of private images was present with her mom today in Onslow County District Court as Judge William M. Cameron lll found her not guilty. Luckenbaugh was accused of trying to protect her friend by creating a Grindr account using a fictitious name and body description. Luckenbaugh found a profile she believed to be Laughinghouse and contacted a friend, who shared the photos with other friends.
Laughinghouse testified in court that he was looking for more than a hookup on the Grindr site. He testified that he was suspended for one day with pay and now he is back at Swansboro High School as a French teacher.
Luckenbaugh’s attorney Matt Silva said the state failed to prove two elements beyond a reasonable doubt that Luckenbaugh acted with intent to humiliate or demean Laughinghouse and that Laughinghouse’s expectation of privacy was not reasonable after sending personal images of himself to a stranger online.
Judge Cameron later found Luckenbaugh’s not guilty after revisiting Silva’s two elements the state failed to prove.