Three Californian teenagers have been arrested on suspicion of sexual assaulting a 15-year-old girl who killed herself eight days after the alleged incident.

The boys, all 16, were arrested in connection with an alleged sexually assault of Audrie Pott in September 2012.

Lawyers for the 15-year-old's family claim the boys took pictures of the attack on their phones which then "spread like wildfire".

Eight days after the alleged sexual assault, Audrie posted on her Facebook that "the whole school knows" and that her life was "ruined".

The Saratoga High School pupil was then found hanged at her home.

Family attorney Robert Allard said: "The family has been trying to understand why their loving daughter would have taken her life at such a young age and to make sure that those responsible would be held accountable.

"After an extensive investigation that we have conducted on behalf of the family, there is no doubt in our minds that the victim, then only 15 years old, was savagely assaulted by her fellow high school students while she lay on a bed completely unconscious."

Santa Clara County Sheriff's Lt. Jose Cardoza said it arrested two of the teens at Saratoga High School and the third, a former Saratoga High student, at Christopher High School in Gilroy.

The alleged incident took place at a house party in Saratoga, California in September 2012. Allard said Audrie ended up unconscious after drinking too much. Three teenage boys then performed a serious of sexual acts on her while she was passed out and took photgraphs of the incident, one of which ended up on Facebook.

"It went viral," Allard added. "It was pervasively disseminated."

The three suspects were booked into juvenile hall and face two felonies and one misdemeanour each, all related to sexual assault.

Following the 15-year-old's death, her family set up the Audrie Pott Foundation to provide music and art scholarships and offer youth counselling and support.

The website says Audrei was: "Compassionate about life, her friends, her family, and would never do anything to harm anyone.

"She was in the process of developing the ability to cope with the cruelty of this world but had not quite figured it all out.

"Ultimately, she had not yet acquired the antibiotics to deal with the challenges present for teens in today's society."

The case echoes of 17-year-old Canadian teenager Rehtaeh Parsons, who killed herself following months of torment after photos of an alleged rape in 2011 was circulated around school.

Following public outcry over the incident, Nova Scotia's justice minister appointed four government departments to look into Rehtaeh's case after police originally said there was insufficient evidence to charge anyone.

Hacktivist group Anonymous claim to know the identities of the alleged attackers. They have threatened to name them if the Royal Canadian Mounted Police do not charge anyone with the alleged attack.

Update:Three Suspects Previously Cited for Misdemeanour Allegations