By Joseph Kolb
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M., Oct 8 (Reuters) - New Mexico state police are investigating allegations that members of a high school football team secretly videotaped the girls' volleyball team as they changed in an adjacent locker room, authorities said on Wednesday.
The accusations came to light after a parent said his 13-year-old daughter and other members of the 8th grade volleyball team were filmed last week as they changed for a game at the Escalante Middle-High School in Tierra Amarilla.
"They were changing and they witnessed ... a hand come out of the ceiling with an iPhone," Joseph Serna told Albuquerque-based television station KRQE News 13.
Serna said his son, who plays for the school's freshman football team, told him he heard football players had climbed over a wall in the boys' locker room and removed a ceiling tile to look down into the girl's locker room.
"Some boys were videotaping some girls while they were changing in a locker room ... the New Mexico State Police has launched a criminal investigation into the matter," said Lieutenant Emmanuel Gutierrez, a spokesman for the force.
He said all of the female victims are under the age of 18, but he could not say how many were involved.
Voyeurism is a crime in New Mexico, he added, but he would not speculate on what charges, if any, would be filed.
Anthony Casados, superintendent of the Chama School District, which includes Tierra Amarilla, about 150 miles north of Albuquerque, said an internal investigation was launched on Oct. 2, as soon as the matter was brought to his attention.
"Somebody called the state police and an officer showed up Monday," Casados said. There was no school on Friday. (Reporting by Joseph Kolb; Editing by Daniel Wallis and Sandra Maler)