Police say Rebecca Sedwick was relentlessly tormented by schoolmates for a year. Finally, the 12-year-old girl climbed to a tower at an abandoned concrete plant and leaped to her death.
The sheriff in Polk County, Fla., took the unusual step this week of arresting two girls, ages 12 and 14, on felony charges of aggravated stalking in the case. The arrests were made after the 14-year-old boasted on the Internet that she had bullied Rebecca, Sheriff Grady Judd said.
“She made a comment in reference to, “Yeah, I bullied Rebecca, and yeah, she’s dead, but I don’t give a (blank).” We saw that and we thought, that’s over the top,” the sheriff said.
Authorities said the 14-year-old and her 12-year-old accomplice harassed Rebecca at school, then followed her online.
Authorities say their taunts included “You should drink bleach and die, no one likes you,” and “You should go kill yourself.”
Rebecca hurled herself to her death on Sept. 9 after writing to friends, “I am jumping and I can’t take it anymore.”
Her mother, Tricia Norman, said last month that she wanted her daughter’s tormenters to be held accountable.
“I want them to pay for it. Because they took my baby away, they took her self confidence away,” Norman said, crying.
“They took her self-worth away,” the mom said. “And now she’s gone from me. ” …
This is almost certainly a chain reaction where the girls who bullied Rebecca were attacked and wounded emotionally by someone else. Instead of hating themselves, however, they acted out the attacks and delivered that hate they received to the first person they found who would absorb it for them. Teach people to break the chain.