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Teenager cites school bullying in suicide note

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Published : 2014-09-02 20:29
Updated : 2014-09-03 12:24

A high-school student who recently killed herself included accusations of school violence and the attackers’ names in her suicide note, local police said Tuesday.

The 17-year-old victim surnamed Kim, who was found dead Monday, said that several students at her school repeatedly abused her, according to Ulsan Jungbu Police Station. She mentioned the bullies’ names in the note, saying they badmouthed and beat her repeatedly.

“I won’t suffer and cry anymore because of you,” she wrote in the note. “I bet a lot of other kids at school reported your violence. Stop hurting other kids. It’ll all come back to bite you someday.”

Her body was recovered Monday morning at a parking lot near her apartment in Ulsan by a local security guard. Investigators found a suicide note in her room, leading them to believe that she had jumped from her apartment, located on the 10th floor of the building.

Police said they are conducting a further investigation to determine whether there was actual abuse in the classroom. As of Tuesday, five students mentioned in the note had been summoned for questioning, and officers provisionally concluded that at least four had actually taken part in bullying.

“They admitted to slapping and kicking Kim recently at a vacant lot, but denied that they were involved in continuous physical abuse,” police said.

Officials at Kim’s school had been completely oblivious of the supposed abuse, and said they were “shocked” by her death. They thought Kim and the students in the suicide note had been close friends.

Investigators will continue the probe based on the records on Kim’s cellphone and messages on social networking services, while attempting to determine whether there are other victims of school violence.

School violence has been a perennial problem in Korea. Despite a government tally showing a decreasing rate of such violence, horrendous deaths caused by students continue to occur.

This has prompted a local teachers’ group to raise questions about the findings of the government-led survey on school violence.

By Yoon Min-sik (minsikyoon@heraldcorp.com)

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