• "Cheer" star Gabi Butler is heartbroken over the arrest of her friend and former teammate, Jerry Harris
  • Co-star La'Darius Marshall also expressed shock and dismay over the news
  • Harris was arrested in Chicago on Thursday, Sept. 17, and charged with production of child pornography

"Cheer" star Gabi Butler has broken her silence over her friend and former teammate Jerry Harris' arrest on child pornography charges.

Harris was arrested in Chicago on Thursday, Sept. 17, and charged with production of child pornography for allegedly "enticing an underage boy to produce sexually explicit videos and photos of himself," federal officials stated. In a statement, Butler expressed her shock and heartbreak over her "Cheer" co-star's arrest.

"Like most of you, I am shocked, dismayed, and deeply saddened by the recent news concerning my friend and former teammate Jerry Harris," she wrote on Instagram a day after Harris' arrest. "Ever since I heard the news I have gone back and forth between sobbing uncontrollably and trying to wrap my head around why something like this could happen."

Butler clarified that while she had been close to Harris, she was not aware of any actions related to what her former teammate had been accused of.

"I believe the protection of children is more than important than ever in today's world and absolutely do not condone any actions that bring harm to a child," the 22-year-old cheerleader continued. "Issuing a statement like this hurts my heart more than any of you will ever know. As a Christian woman, the only thing I know to do is pray for all involved and the world we live in. My heart is broken."

Another co-star on the Netflix docuseries, La'Darius Marshall, also opened up about Harris' arrest on social media. In a statement posted on Twitter, he said as a "victim of sexual abuse as a child," he knows "all too well the pain of experiencing this type of abuse and the difficulties it can create for life after such trauma."

"I feel as though I have had the wind knocked out of me," the 22-year-old wrote. "How could this happen? The pain of watching the recent events surrounding my friend and former teammate Jerry Harris has been gut-wrenching."

Harris has admitted to authorities that he exchanged sexually explicit videos and photos with "at least between 10 to 15 other individuals he knew were minors." He also admitted to having sex with a 15-year-old at a cheerleading event last year, The New York Times reported.

Reps for Netflix and Navarro College also released statements to Entertainment Tonight addressing the incident.

"Like everyone we are shocked by this news. Any abuse of minors is a terrible crime and we respect the legal process," a Netflix spokesperson told ET.

The Navarro College rep said the school takes matters involving the abuse of minors seriously but refused to comment on the ongoing criminal proceeding "out of respect for everyone involved."

Jerry Harris and Gabi Butler
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JANUARY 30: (EXCLUSIVE COVERAGE) (L-R) La'Darius Marshall, Gabi Butler, Jerry Harris and Monica Aldama join host Zach Stafford at BuzzFeed's "AM To DM" on January 30, 2020 in New York City. Manny Carabel/Getty Images