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Cyberbullying: 13-Year-Old Houston Boy Dies of ‘Bullycide’

Asher Brown, an 8th grade student at Hamilton Middle School in Houston, Texas, committed suicide last Thursday after enduring two years of relentless bullying at school. Brown’s mother and stepfather say their son was bullied about “his small size, his religion and because he did not wear designer clothes and shoes.” Moreover, students accused Brown of being gay and often mocked him during gym class. The most recent bullying incident occurred just one day before Brown’s suicide when another student tripped Brown as he was walking down a staircase in school. After the 13-year-old boy fell and attempted to pick up his books, the bully kicked the books and then proceeded to kick Brown down the remaining set of stairs.

Brown’s parents told reporters that they made several complaints about the harassment to Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District officials, but calls were never returned. The district, however, claims they never received any such reports.

“That’s absolutely inaccurate- it’s completely false,” says Amy Truong, Brown’s mother. “I did not hallucinate phone calls to counselors and assistant principals. We have no reason to make this up… It’s like they’re calling us liars.”

‘Bullycide’ (suicide caused by incessant bullying) can be prevented if teachers, students, parents, and school officials act quickly after they learn about frequent assaults and harassment. More often than not, bullied victims come across as introverted and labeled unstable individuals. Onlookers simply dismiss the victim as being troubled or depressed without investigating further as to why the victim may be distressed.  Communities must work together to create a safe environment for teens that encourages both victims and witnesses to report bullying with assurance that all such reports will be taken seriously and addressed immediately. Otherwise, the number of bullycide deaths will only grow.

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119 Responses »

  1. I do want to point out one thing. Asher's mom should never have called the school. She should have sent out e-mails and cc'd the principal, vice principal, and superintendent, along iwth the teacher. When you are dealing with parasitic scum filth like school administrators, or any other government agencies, big banks, etc. NEVER try to address anything by phone. Always use e-mail. That way you have proof that you have contacted them , and they will be unable to lie their way out of the situation, which is what they will try to do every time, just like this one. If Mrs.Brown had sent emails she would have plenty to back her up for legal action, unfortunately, now it is her word against theirs.

    This is a heartbreaking story. My condolences to Asher's family in this terrible time. Rest in Peace in God's arms, Asher.

  2. Our schools are not doing enough to pervent this type of behavior,as I know all to well the affects that any form of bullying can have on a young person. My daughter has suffered this type of bullying,and wrost,sexual abuse harassment in her school,and know one took effect action to ensure her saftey. keep pushing it under a rug, that does not help the viticms.Wake up!!!!!!!! Our childern are at risk daily. As a parent I deal with the after math of my daughter pain,know one cares.Parents are the ones paying the price,the country needs to wake up,and stop these monsters from hurting any other students!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. my prayers are with this young man's family. First of all, to all the writers that are condenming the
    parents of not teaching their kids to stand up for themselves, a quick reminder we're not dealing
    with the same kind of bullying like when you were young. In the old days, it was fistfight these
    days were are dealing with students with weapons. Okay a child should know how to defend
    his/herself but in the other hand you don't know what that bully has on him/her. I think it's going
    to come down to most children will be home schooled just to keep them safe. I have a 12 yrs old
    daughter that is in charter school now already, I have enrolled her in cyber academy I'll be dammed
    if I am going to have to bury my child for some insecure punk or punks. In 2010, she was being
    bullied by her own teacher to the point that I had to get an educational lawyer that's the only I
    put an end to this nonsense and I couldn't wait for the school year to end to get her out. It is a
    stressful situation for both the parent and the child. I agree the mother should have taken her child out of that school way before this situation got out hand.
    I suggest that teachers find another profession because there won't be any students physically in the classrooms if we don't put an end to this

  4. my prayers are with this young men family. First of all, to all the writers that are condenming the
    parents of not teaching their kids to stand up for themselves a quick reminder we're not dealing
    with the same kind of bullying like when you were young. In the old days, it was fistfight these
    days were are dealing with students with weapons. Okay a child should know how to defend
    his/herself but in the other hand you don't know what that bully has on him/her. I think it's going
    to come down to most children will be home schooled just to keep them safe. I have a 12 yrs old
    daughter that is in charter school now already, I have enrolled her in cyber academy I'll be dammed
    if I am going to have to bury my child for some insecure punk or punks. In 2010, she was being
    bullied by her own teacher to the point that I had to get an educational lawyer that's the only I
    put an end to this nonsense and I couldn't wait for the school year to end to get her out. It is a
    stressful situation for both the parent and the child. I agree the mother should have taken her child out of that school way before this situation got out hand.

  5. The trouble with "zero tolerance" is that the bullied who stick up for themselves get in as much trouble as the bullies. School staff cant be every where at all times to protect students so bullies act with more impunity than ever. Same thing in greater society - people have to be able to defend themselves as govt cant do it all.

  6. My son, who is a twice exceptional child (gifted with special needs), was bullied at school, stood up for himself, and was then suspended. I appealed the suspension, and the school removed it from his record. I also removed my child from the school, because he came home telling me he absolutely could not return there, stated his reasons, and showed huge signs of distress, depression, and anxiety. Currently, I am homeschooling my son and have found, what I believe to be, an excellent school for the next school year, and he is doing well.

    Bullying is a major issue, and schools don't effectively address it. My heart goes out to the family of this young man; I wish I could have talked to them before this tragedy occurred and discussed alternatives to this horrible school with them. I hope they can find peace.

  7. Good reason to HOMESCHOOL! Yes, you CAN! I pulled my son out at 8th grade and began homeschooling with my church homeschool group. I was amazed at all the opportunities available to homeschoolers. He played football with homeschoolers and competed with other Christian academies. He earned his Eagle Scout in a homeschool boy scout troup. He graduated with honors and tested out at top 10 per cent of the country. Seriously consider it. You don't have to let your child go through that kind of treatment. I wouldn't....I did something about it. Your child is worth any cost.

  8. Class action lawsuits en masse against school districts are the only language they'll understand. Violence in schools against children has always been ignored in all schools in our country, always. Schools will never do anything about it unless forced to. There's nothing wrong with being bankrupted by lawsuits until they do something about bullying, since modern US schools don't really teach anything anyway.

  9. If your child is being bullied go to the police. what these bullies are doing is a crime. bulling should be against the law and the bully should be held by the police dept. we need our judicial system to implement laws to have bulling listed as a crime, and that is what it is. its assult, it harassment and much more. it that was happening to an adult at work, wouldnt it be a crime. why is it ok for children to endure the punishment of having crimes commited to them.

  10. Sad. A cute little boy but aged far beyond his years. There was more going on here than bullying by other kids.

  11. How sad....look at that beautiful face. If only he knew how unimportant those that tease him will be to him some day, he would have been able to cope. I hope that the parents of those children in his grade do some real soul searching and identify if their own children were part of this incident. God bless his family...of course we know Asher is safe and full of joy with Jesus...I hope that comforts his earthly family.

  12. To all parents: If your child is being bullied, dont call the school. GO TO THE DAMN SCHOOL!!!!!! Confront the school officials, principal, whoever, have that bully report, and let the bully know if it happens one more time, he/she will do with you! Tired of hearing parents calling the school, get your lazy asses up and go to the damn school. 2 years of bullying, get real!

    • Parents have done that for generations to no avail. Suing the schools and pressing charges is needed, schools will never do anything voluntarily.

    • I agree. They won't take you seriously unless you make an appearance at the school and it wouldn't hurt to document everything as well.

  13. How many more children have to die before schools stand up and prevent this from happening. Teachers turn the other way, students who ignore it. Maybe next time its you that gets bullied or your child-Take notice TEACHERS of whats going on in your schools and do something about it.Students- tell someone when you or another child is getting b.ullied All this crap about teachers not getting paid enough . Most of them are their to get a paycheck and thats it they dont give a crap about the kids.

    • You don't have a clue as to what teachers do. I have been teaching math and coaching for the past 22 years. I could have chosen any career with a math degree. I chose to teach because I enjoy helping children learn. I not only teach math, I teach life skills and always encourage my students to let someone know if they are being bullied. If I were there to just collect a check, I surely wouldn't have chosen teaching as my career. Get a life and think before you write or speak. You are one of the reasons teachers are leaving the field of teaching.

  14. I would not have allowed my child to continue to go back to a school where he was enduring such physical abuse. If my phone calls had been ignored I would have been up at the school in the administrator's faces until something was done. How tragic that this young man (and any others) have to endure such shame and suffering over something he had no control over to begin with. No child should have to live in fear just to attend school to get an education. Looking at his face makes me want to cry. He looks as if he is typically a happy child and there is just no telling how bright of a future he would have had. I think that those who bully, and their parents, should face some stiff consequences.

  15. Such a precious little life,,,poor thing..our hearts go out to his family. And just another example of a school district trying to sweep this under the rug.
    My granddaughter's school they have an organization that prevents bullying. Kids against bullying or something like that....they put on skits, programs,and they take complaints from those being bullied.
    Such a sad story.

  16. I guess I don't understand why parents don't take their child out of that sort of environment. The teachers are horrible and turn their head! I've seen them making a bad situation worse and nobody sticks up for these kids once they've been picked on it only gets worse!

    It has to stop with first the teachers and then the parents need really good communication and maybe a pamphlet on what step they should take or a pamphlet for the kid on what steps if the parents won't help.

    The child looks like a sweeheart and I hope and pray people will get some understanding! There appears to be absolutely no room for diversity in our schools......wear the right clothes, hang out with the right people, etc., etc.!

    RIP Asher

  17. My older brother quit school because of a Bully at the school. It seemed that the boys and girls flocked around him because of his bullying tactics. He had no other outstanding talents and would copy everyone's notes rather than get his own assignments. I never had anything to do with him or his friends and they left me alone due to my small size. They treated me as an outcast, and I was happy to let it go as that. The last I heard was a fight he had with another boy and he got the worst of that encounter. What goes around seems to come around.

  18. did you talk to fox four news? i understand his disposition cause i use to be very small and picked on easy. and i do wish that the bullying could stop but the truth is it won't as long as a parent is afraid to dicipline there child or scare some sense into them there will always be bullying. however if the government were to make it illegal to bully and throw the bully into a J.D.C.=Juvenile Detention Center with a scared straight program. then there would be less bullies however you have to no, we all have to stop bullying at the roots. for the youth!

    • That's not the issue. Usually the bullies have the teachers and administrators fooled. They think these kids (bullies) are the cream of the crop and can do know wrong but as soon as they turn their backs they are back to doing their sinister deeds.

  19. I'm really tired of the parents of these poor kids blaming everyone but themselves. These kids were no properly taught, they were weak, had low self esteem and self image and felt they had no where to turn. I blam the parents failure. Most kids are bullied at one point or another. This is not new, stop acting like it. What is new is the way parents teach their kids to be weak. The teachers can't disclipline anymore, the school with its zero tolerance , over the top ridiculous policies are a liberal mess that isnt working. The "bullies" feel they can do anything with no consequenses because the school cant do anything, teachers are not allowed to do anything because so liberal parent took a school to court because their kids got paddled. You know what, I got a lot of paddelings in school and it made me a better person. I was overweight and not attractive..I got picked on and bullied a LOT. My dad told me if I didnt like it, do something about it. I asked what could I do..he said..defend yourself. Hit that kid as hard as you can square in the nose...I did and it changed my life. I was bullied no more. I hit the gym, lifted weights, lost all my weight and got big and muscular...played college football and now I am a sucessful professional that is considered really good looking and buff. I'm now 45 years old, weight 230 Pounds and have 8% body fat....all because I stood up to my bully and "did something about it". Teach your kids strength, to stand up for themselves, give them support, tell them if they get in trouble at school because they defended themselves, they will not get into trouble at home and you will fight for them. Wake up and realize it isnt all the bullies fault but society has enabled them to bully and society has made your kids weak....only you as a parent can make things different.

    • In all fairness, things are different now with kids than they were 25 plus years ago. These kids are alot more aggressive and their are other factors involved that were not present back in the day. Yes, I think kids should have a tougher skin but to blame them for being bullied is absurd. People need to leave others alone. Now if this kid that was being bullied came up to the school with a gun and shot everyone up they would be saying what happened he just snapped out of nowhere. Lesson: leave people along, you go to school to learn not be a menace.

    • from your sound like a bully

    • Your point about teaching your child to know he or she is great is great. But do you really think the parents of this poor little boy needs to hear someone say they are at fault for theirs son passing. You need to learn the meaning of the word cooth. It is a Scottish coloquilism meaning to be polite or well mannered knowing when its not appropriate to give an opinion to a suffering family that can only hurt them worse. Very good that you made good of yourself now pay it forward and witness to people don't talk down to them saying look how good I did slide your testimony in on them by helping not tearing down.

    • Amen, brother!

      This needs to be put in a front page ad! This is too true! I was a girl and was bullied back in my day, I will be 49. But even as a girl, we didn't take no junk. My brothers taught us how to wrestle and how to fight; We took it head on! We did not go home crying to mommy! We took care of business. Of course this was back in the day when you could fight with words and fists!

  20. The negligence on the part of the school is criminal and punitive and punishment should be severe. The bully's actions are criminal or even murder. Let me get word someone is bullying one of mine. I will end them and those associated with them.

  21. I was very small as a growing child and was subject to bullying, but it only happened once. I just didn't take it anymore. The next time, I was bullied, I used a ball bat on the bully. That was the end of his bullying, needless to say. Teach your kids to fight back.parents.

  22. The ever increasing price we pay for large schools and not enough local teachers that know the students and the parrents. You shouldn't have to call the whole school's coporate ladder to find or in this case not find an advocate for you child. You should be able to call the school janitor and get the help you need. There should be a policy of firing anyone who receives a call like this from a concerned parrent and later pretends they didn't know.

  23. While this is sad, it reminds me of the times I spent in middle school. The ones who were always picked on, we made a point to be nice and respectful to them. The bad part is, some of these kids were so used to being thrown to the ground we sometimes got a sense that they felt as if we were patronizing them (which of course we were not).

    There has to be more to the story and a larger motive for suicide than just incessant bullying.

  24. Bullying does need very close attention! This has go to stopped, it has gotten to out of hand. I experienced it during my school years but I got through it...believe me it was not easy. I know how the victims feel, you get this huge knot in your stomach while enroute to school. Stay strong young ones and do report behavior you consider bullying and remember what one may perceive as simple teasing is classified as bullying. Always be considerate of others' feelings.

  25. On the one hand, bullying is not something anyone should have to endure.

    On the other hand, in the adult world, adults bully one another often, though sometimes in more subtle ways, as we struggle against one another in arenas of competition such as workplace politics maneuverings as we all attempt to move up the ladder at our jobs. Make no mistake, bullying of various sorts does occur among adults.

    In approaching such a complex issue as this, parents and school administrations need to deal with the matter, bullying, without winding up taking action which produces kids that become adults who cannot stand up on their own two feet and deal with when other adults bully them in the ways that adults do it. When they are adults, there will not be teachers and parents they can run to to protect them from bullies.

  26. Voters need to start electing more politicians that allow for victims defending themselves to be legal including kids standing up for themselves using ALL MEANS necessary. Historic precedence shows that social programs DO NOT work. There are good people and there are bad people and social programming does not fix it - it is what it is. A community kicking the sh_t out of bullies and their families (yes its the bully's family's fault - common knowledge so don't try to psycho-babble this) and running them out of town is the only way. If you don't like law and order, move out. If you don't like the USA, move out! Very simple. I am proud to say that my family and myself are NOT victims. We do not allow it. We also will come to a victim's needs, because that's how we were and are raised.

  27. The cure for bullies= A good beatdown, preferably with a ball bat. That will start happening unless bullying is taken seriously by the schools.

  28. maybe the schools should appoint some one to take the kid thats being bullied to his class's. like maybe adults that volunteer sort of like an escort or more security. BUT THIS IS GOT TO STOP!

  29. If this young man was part Asian, then his parents should file suit in FEDERAL COURT because his civil rights were violated. Am I the only one to suspect that his tormentors targeted him due to race/ethnicity? The violaters should be ruthlessly dealt with as this crime is a threat to civil peace.

    P.S. TO all the right-wing tough jock types who think bullying is OK, here is a perfect opportunity to keep your mouths shut.

    • OMG, James with your Ph.D. not everything is about race; I'm sure these kids would have bullied this young man no matter what RACE he was. You don't even know the race of the kid doing the major bullying....

  30. I am 48. When I was in school, we were told to stand up to the bully and defend ourselves. Most of the time the bully stopped after that. These days though, if you stand up to a bully and defend yourself, you get expelled for it, as in a recent case in TX. They tell them to report it to the authorities.
    Some schools are great and act immediately. Some though, ignore the problem and deny everything. Then pass the blame for they're failure. IN MY OPINION. IF IT IS PROVEN TO BE TRUE THAT THE SCHOOL WAS CALLED AND THEY DID NOTHING, THE PERSON WHO WAS INFORMED AND DID NOTHING SHOULD BE CRIMINALLY LIABLE.

  31. If I were the parents I'd sue the shit out of the school and those punks who bullied him.

  32. The parents should sue the school to have the people, they spoke to removed from their positions. They obviously did not do their jobs.
    Schools have to be taught how to deal with bullies, turning the other cheek does not work. Bring back paddling. Give the parents of the bully a choice; permanently remove the child from school, or force the family into counselling, before allowing the child to return to school on probation.

  33. absolute bullshit
    I was one of the shortest kids in class for nearly my entire time in school, and as such was an easy target for bullies to make themselves feel better by picking on someone that they perceived as weaker than them.
    This is a normal and natural part of growing up, the problem is that people have gotten to weak minded, in recent years.
    BOO-HOO someone picked on me, I am going to kill myself. OK there Kurt no brain. Killing yourself is the cowards way out of things.

    More focus should be put towards educating students of the struggles and failures that you WILL face in life. Bullying in school is just the beginning of those struggles that EVERYONE will face at some point in their life. If you are unable to learn how to deal with this, then you will never be able to handle living in the real world once you graduate school and enter the workforce.

    • This is not a "normal" part of growing up. The parents of the bullies are obviously bullies and the kids take to school what they see at home. Parents need to teach kids to keep their hand to themselves.

  34. I was bullied all through out jr high, and high school, and up to 10 years after I graduated from co-workers... One thing I learned is you must not be afraid, or scared, and have to stand up to others no matter what. . If you let people push you around or bully you around, its going to be an ongoing thing till the end of your life.. I was a victom of bullying.. You think adults wont do it to other adults ?? Think again ! I went to jail for something I didnt do because I did not stand up to myself. Costed me $7,500 dollars that I did not have, 3 nights in jail, and a jury trial like I was on trial for murder.. I was the victom, and I got charged for the crime....

  35. No matter how "mature" you think your child is, they are not ready for social media until the age of about 16. Considering this is once again a cyberbulling situation, parents need to wake up and realize that through preventing their child from being "cool," and having things such as facebook just is not a good idea. Without social media, many of these "tough" bullies would not have a computer to hide behind to harass others anonymously. Instead, these kids are awake all hours of the night, giving others a hard time, and not getting the sleep their bodies need. Wake up parents. Your child could be the bully or the next victim of cyber bullying. Social media is not cool for kids. You are putting your child and others at risk.

  36. I'm sorry but bullycide has got to be the worst name I've ever heard. This kid died of suicide no one can bully you to death unless they actually murder someone. Bullycide I thought I'd never see a day when someone called a suicide a bullycide.

  37. People who bully kids deserve hard time - it is a crime and if it results in a death the punishment should be double, imho!

  38. It carries on way beyond university years too. There are middle aged cyberbullies out there. Trust me. I am dealing with one right now who is in their 40s. And it's not the first time. The other one is late thirties. Theyve never met but recently hooked up online and conspired to go at it as a team. And it's been going on for nearly a decade. It is disgraceful, especially since they both have kids. Great role models, eh?

  39. Parents have to take action. I'm sure these parents are grieving, and I mean no disrespect.
    But your child counts on you to take action. I could not send my child back
    to school after being bullied. For what purpose? Bullies should be expelled immediately.
    I don't know why they are not. There is too much talk and no action on this subject of bullying.
    Parents must take action. You cannot depend on others. It is a sorry state of affairs.
    I hope this family can find peace.

  40. Why is the government not waking up to this problem ?

  41. It's too bad that the bullies aren't put in jail or maybe a little community service in the morgue.

  42. my heart goes out to all who experience this, bullying/teasing at schools. my 7th gr daughter no longer attends the school in Green Co. due to being bullied and teased about being Asian. she was a good student, no behavior issues, just could no longer take the constant teasing. Her personality changed, became depressed, didn't like the way she looked, struggled to understand why the kids would want to do these things ..... we went to the staff many times and were told they could only talk to the other students, their hands were tied, and what did we want them to do, did anyone else see/hear this happening. very stressful and painful, also damaging to the student who deal with this. These memories will linger a life time

  43. So what if he was "gay". People should not judge others by their sexuality or race, religion, weight, height or ethnicity. Asher Brown is HUMAN!!!!!!!!!! He can make his own life decisions and should not be criticized by them. No matter what he has done in life good or bad he did not deserve this. The person(s) responsible for this should be punished severely and not let back into society, How would they feel if it happened to them. I don't call people names but this makes an exception... The culprits are of the following: MEAN, STUPID, BULLIES, PATHETIC, GROSS, CRUEL, HATEFUL, WORTHLESS AND DISGRACEFUL. I could keep going on. Not just the ones responsible for this but EVERY BULLY in AMERICA!!!!!!. May little Asher have justice for what has happened. GOD REST HIS SWEET SOUL!!

  44. Funny, before the media started reporting this (and naming it:"bullycide"), I don't recall such a problem.

  45. lets just lock everybody up! then we won't have any problems. sad story, but this is just another
    example of people wanting big brother to solve their problems for them.
    it doesn't take a village.

  46. This is so sad. This school and school district should be held accountable. My heart goes out to this child and his family. Why is it some children are targeted? Some families have to move because of the bullying of their child and when the child enters a new school he is instead, accepted, if not, now popular. I am not suggesting that parents of bullied kids pick up and move, I am only wondering what started the bullying in one school, yet didn't manifest, for reasons unknown, in another? Bullies should also be held accountable, no matter what age. We all have a good sense of right from wrong at a very young age so there's no excuse except that either the parent of the bully knows about their childs behavior and chooses to do nothing about it or maybe they don't know and would have done something had they've known but to call the victim unstable, introverted, depressed or troubled is an outrage! Kids can be very mean and most parents are aware of their own childs behavior, good or bad, so the best line of defense starts at home. Teach your children well, you may prevent one of these incidents from happening in the future and just knowing that should be satisfying enough to do it! God bless this child as he now rests in peace.

  47. If this happens more than once, sue the school district. The idea that this could be allowed at any school is unbelievable, but this sort of thing happened to me *all the time* growing up, exactly they way they happened to that kid, for my religion, for my lack of fighting skills, and for being a nerd. Amazingly, the fact that I am black is the least of the reasons why I was picked on. Primarily, it was because I was a socially awkward nerd.Kids who don't know how to fight just get picked on, and school districts do nothing about it. Nowadays, if a kid does fight back, he'll get suspended!

    If any parent has a kid that is bullied more than once, they should sue the school district, and the school board, and the principal of the school should be named in a separate personal lawsuit. Make them pay.

    Oh, and if another kid knocks your kid down the stairs, that is felony assault.

  48. What was going through the bully's mind? How could he possibly think it is okay to kick someone down the stairs? Was he laughing while he did it? Was he angry? It astounds me that a boy could do that to another human being.

  49. My daughter is 12 years old. She was being bullied so bad. We went to the doctor and they diagnosed her as depressed and put her on medication. The next day we went to the school and reported it. She gave the names of the two boys and one girl who were doing the bullying. The principal promised her he would protect her. Her first day back to school from Easter break was 4-10-12. She was tormented in the gym and was in the corner crying.There was no teacher or adult in sight. They failed her. So she decided right then since no one protected her at school she would end her life. So she went snooping in my room while I was in the tub and found where I had hid her antidepressants. She went to her room and sent out mass text to her true friends saying goodbye. Then she swallowed almost the whole bottle of pills. She spent three days in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit and then was in a step down unit. From there she was transferred to a psychiatric facility and spent six days there. She just came home yesterday. So far, nothing has been done to her bullies. They were still at school while she was fighting for her life in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit. This really isn't fair. Today was her first day back to school and she had 2 panic attacks on the way there. But her therapist thinks she is ready to handle going back there. At first, the school and school board were communicating with us and now they are saying they can't talk to us. Does anyone have any advice for our family?

    • I'm so sorry your lil one went through this. I would start making surpise visits to the school and peek in on her classes and document everything. If the school says anything let them know you will go over their heads and that some of them will not have a job before it's over with.

    • please don't let your child return to a school that has done nothing with these bullies. she already tried to end her life once! go your local newspaper! let everyone know what is going on. please see if you can change her school. and don't give up...continue to go to that school everyday and leave a paper trail of what you're doing. make sure you make notes there and keep a copy for yourself. good luck & God bless

  50. My son had some similar experiences. The school will use obfuscation and denial as long as they can. Then they will turn the questions on the kid who was bullied. The school is afraid of the cost of lawsuits and the first comment from the parent of a bully is some variation of; "You can't prove it. I will sue you." Of course there is an army of lawyers willing to go along with that logic. Why not? It pays just as well as a legitimate lawsuit.
    The best example of the actual cause of bullying can be found by meeting the bully's parents. Usually they are self-obsessed bullies themselves. Understand that the parents have no retraints of any kind on their behaviors and you understand why the little bully bastards have no restraints on their behavors.

  51. There's more to this than just the bullying. Bullying has been around for years, and I had to put up with a lot worse than what these kids are killing themselves over. Somehow these kids are deficient, and missing something inside that makes them able to deal with this. It's likely that you will always be bullied in life to some degree by someone bigger than you, at school, at college, at work. Learn to deal with it and be happy with yourself, because you can't stop people from being jerks.

  52. Wrongful DEATH!

    I hate when administrators try to SIDESTEP their responsiblities or pretend they didnt occur.

    - Parents! Send WRITTEN LETTERS! (Lawyers & judges alike - enjoy reading!)

  53. This is just another example of what happens when schools do not live up to their end of the bargin..My son was also bullied, so my heart goes out to these parents.. The time has come for parents to say enough is enough..When your child is at school the school has a responsiblity to protect your child. I am so sick of schools having all these ANTI Bullying programs but yet DO NOTHING when a child is actually being bullied. I am not one to go for legal action unless warrented but these school districts need to wake up and realize we as parents and our childern have a RIGHT to go to school and not be bullied and when that is not done we should have legal recourse.

  54. Bullying of any type should carry a maximum prison sentence and parents need to call the police and protective services and let these agencies contact the school. Naturally the school doesn't want to admit they were contacted because it opens them to a lawsuit.

  55. We all know there is no simple solution. There is no return to the surreality of the 1950's, eithor. What is effective to stop the bully mentality is peer pressure from other children, that the bully does not impress them, that is the captive audiance, make this the village so that it does not edify the attention method. Better educate the other children and the bully will follow. The bully accomplishes because it believes it can lead by shock force.

  56. Parents need to get tougher on bullies... I would personally go and beat the S##t out of a bully if all other avenues would lead nowhere...

  57. I am so sorry for anyne to have to go through this...For anyone who is reading, if you do not get a response directly from the school after the 2nd phone call, then call the superintendents office next, if that does not work after 1 phone to them, then call the State board of education... OR forget all of that and after 2 or3 phone calls to the school, and just say, ok that's fine you do not want to call back, I am sure ALL the news stations, the newwspapers would LOVE to get a hold of the schools in actions on bullying..
    I had to do this and then with in 5 mins a phone calll from the superintendents office was made
    to me and they said..ummm wait.. err yu really do not have to call the newspapers or the TV stations this will get taken care of today...

    As sad as it is, this is what has to be done and I will not hesitate to do this at all....

    Hugssssssssssssssssssss to all that have lost a child to bullys...

  58. Please get your kids into tae kwon do immediately if they are being bullied. The other kids in the class will help your children learn discipline, give them a good example, and also a sense of everything will be okay. Your child will make new friends in the class and pick up the skills necessary to defend against physical attacks.

  59. My daughter of 6 yrs became the focus of a group of bullies in her elementary school. After numerous complaints and meetings with school officials and no satisfaction; I decided on a different approach I confronted the parents directly. I made it very clear that if my daughter suffered another injury(bites, scratches and bruises) I would personally beat the living shyte out each one of them. No problems since...

  60. Out of the two years of this bullying, what did the parents do? Obviously he didn't have much of a home life to turn to instead of killing himself. I think a major reason why "bullycide" even occurs is due to lack of involvement in child's life...even for bully as well. At the first INKLING of any sort of behavior like that towards my children? I would go to the school, go to the bullies parents...and then teach my kid how to fight back and teach these little bully runts what they aren't being taught at home. Teach you kids to fend for themselves and love them up with the confidence to do so!

  61. The issue the parents have concerning the phone calls made to the school can be easily proved via phone records. It's a shame that kids have to endure this type of behavior which is allowed to flourish in the schools because no one stands up for those being bullied. Kids witness to this behavior who may not physically join in the bullying but laugh about it are just as responsible as the bullys themselves. If most of the kids would stand up to this behavior and ostersize the bullys it would happen less frequently.

  62. If my child were bullied, my child would IMMEDIATELY be home schooled. The bullying will not stop, ever. Either the parents move, send the child to live with relatives elsewhere; just make sure the child never goes back. If a child is gay, never tell anyone in school. Whats the point; deaththreats start, plus its no ones business. Also, have the child take defensive classes, girls included. Karate is at the YMCA.Schools must have moniters in the hallways or large gathering places for students. Moniters of volunteeer parents or retired citizens in the school. Cameras should be installed. Parents donate money for this and matched by the school. If harrassment is in a workplace, its illegal and lawsuits are filed. Why not in schools-go after the bullies.

  63. It saddens me to hear of so many young people that think the only thing left for them is to die. We just had a 17 yr old high school senior kill himself after bullying by school administrators over a misunderstanding. They berated him for over an hour and broke this poor boy until he felt he was worthless and had nothing to live for. What are these bullys learn from their homes? Were they treated this way by their parents,siblings, etc??? Why would anyone want to make someone feel so bad about themselves they want to kill themselves? Bullying needs to be taken seriously!!! Take the bullys through the court procedure and put them in "jail" for a 24 hour period and let them see what life is like on the inside of a jail cell with real criminals that can tell them what they are doing is not the right way to be. Something needs to happen to prevent the bullying that has become so excessive. I was bullied as a young girl in jr. high and it was hard and hurtful - I still have trust issues because of my tormentors. Kids are mean and they need to be taught to be nice and considerate and to have manners.

  64. When I was in school in the 70's Being bullied was just a part of life. I learned to fight to protect myself and when the bullies found out that I could fight back they pretty much left me alone. Times haven't changed. victims need to learn to fight back, this isn't a world of no bullying. You gotta fight back all your life because there will always be bullies after you graduate schools and colleges and universities. One has to learn how to fight back physically, mentally, and psychologically. One has to know beforehand when being bullied will occur including landlords, bosses, employees and even neighbors and family members. One can never escape from being bullied. In the military, the superiors are there to make a man out of young men, now they can't even do that and now look what has happened, No one wants to stand up on their own anymore and expect someone else to fight their battles for them. Sorry to say but this nations has begun to be a nation of wimps.

  65. "bullycide" You have got to be kidding!

  66. Whether the parents called or not, the school administrators and teachers should be held criminally liable in such cases. When the kids go to school they are out of the reach of the parents and under the alleged "control" of the school. If the school cannot control the kids, then the schools are ineffective and should be shut down in favor of schools that can function properly and safely.

    But the title of the article is inaccurate, based on the text of the story above, this was NOT "cyberbullying", it was purely physical thuggery in the school.

    The internet and technology (cyber envronment) played no part in this.

  67. Why did the parents decide that a personal visit to the school, school district and board member was not needed after two years of no response? I know where I would have been on the first no response call!
    The phone is NO replacement for eye to eye meetings with school officials at all levels of education.

  68. It's times like this that I wish there was some way that bullying could be designated as a federal offense punishable by jail time ... 30 years worth would suit me just fine. I bet his tormentors were celebrating his death after hearing the news.

  69. I got on a lot of trouble in school, because I would not stand by and watch someone being bullied, nor would I freely allow myself to be a victim of it.

    Victims of bullying, who cannot rely on the school for assistance, get in more trouble than the bullies do, for defending themselves.

  70. I'm glad this happened. One less intruder onto our lands and just goes to show how weak your people really are. I hope it happens to all of your children.

  71. My son was bullied too! The schools love to blame the victim! My son was repeatedly hit, pushed etc. I asked the school to keep an eye on my son. It escalated to my son being severly assaulted all the way down a hallway. Not one adult was around! I was so mad, I was in the Deans office and I yelled, " I am done! I will press charges on anyone who assaults my son!". The kids backed off after that. No more hitting. This breaks my heart! Schools need to be held accountable. The children that did this need to have charges filed against them. I pray for his soul and his family. The helplessness you feel is horrible.

  72. Bullycide? really? this is why the economy, society, and our young people are failing. why dont you teach your kids to stand up for themselves. you know like back in the day when you settled bullys with a split lip and not a lawyer?

  73. These children also need to know that they will not face retribution from the bullies. That's a first in witnesses stepping forth. Kids are afraid of retribution the same as adults. Protect the witness as well as the victim and more will be exposed. Quit protecting the bullies simply because they are minors. They need to face the consequences for their actions just as adults do.

  74. Authorities got 2 more years to get this Sh*t under control because if my daughter comes home from school one day telling me she's being bullied I will not hesitate to protect my child. If I have to choose between the death of my child or the death of a bully it's a no brainer. I'll gladly lay my life down to protect my child. Let's start treating bullies for what they are - domestic terrorists targeting innocent youths. Don't expect change until it's their own blood being spilt.

  75. this is a shame. but bullyside is bullyship... kids will be kids. get over it. he killed his self. that is natures way of weeding out the weak. truth hurts. sorry.

  76. Not surprised... Just another example of the completely useless, uncaring adults that are employed by schools across Texas, and a few deaths here and there are not going to change anything because the people who can actually make a difference just do not care.

    Mark my words: This is going to happen again. And again, and again, and again.
    Only sometimes, it won't be suicide, it will be homicide.

    Doubt me now, if you want to. But human behavior is a pattern. People are going to act sad for now, but none of those people who can actually change anything are going to care enough to do it.

  77. This is so sad and such a waste!! Any time a person is Different, there will be Bullies there to exploit it!! My daughter attended a school in rural Colorado where she excelled in academics and sports; she also happened to be pretty and the boys liked her, so that garnered the unwanted attention and jealousy of girls! One girl in particular, threatened to put her in the hospital numerous times. Police were brought in to explain to her why what she was doing was Illegal! Nothing helped. This harassment started in middle school and continued into high school - 3 yrs! In hs, the 'officials' told us they didn't take into consideration the previous two yrs! we'd have to start over from day one!! I went to the Court system!! We got a restraining order from a judge that Never gives RO's to anyone (rarely!). The harassment continued. I knew this girl was Unstable (duh!), and not knowing to what extent, I pulled my daughter out of school and she transferred to another hs! But apparently, some rumors and gossip preceded us and she was treated poorly by the new administration - to the pt of having to stand up to teachers, the counselor And the Principal of the new school, several times, including when they refused to admit her to National Honor Society - for no reason whatsoever!! She attended for 2 yrs and then, thankfully, we moved to yet another district, where she was able to finish out her Senior yr in Peace - both academically and socially!! But it wasn't easy!! I felt like I was waging a battle for my child!! It was exhausting, but well worth it!! And I'd do it all over again! It's been 7 yrs and she's a successful young adult, but those yrs still haunt her now and then... Bullying is scarring, even for those who do survive!! And No One is Immune! If a person is Different in Any way - even a so called 'good' way, they can be a Target!! All I can say is Protect your kids as best as you can!! Jump up and down and Scream in their favor!! If the school officials ignore you, go above them to the next level!! I was finally listened to by a Superintendent when I spilled out my story 4 yrs down the line; the Principal 'retired' shortly after, and I like to think I had something to do with it! But if the school officials won't listen, go to Law Enforcement and the Courts. It may get worse before it gets better, but keep trying!! If necessary, go to the Media - it's better now than it was then due to the publicity this issue's gotten! Never stop! Pull your kid out of school if possible! There are solutions to this horrendous ordeal! And hopefully, most will escape finally, even if a bit scarred... My daughter was always a sweet, kind person, but I know this experience made her even more empathetic and compassionate. Something good has to come out of all this pain.

  78. This is a tragic story, but the bully hysteria needs to stop. Kids have always killed themselves. Those that do are suffering from mental illnesses. Putting all the attention on the bully distracts from the true problem- better treatment of mental illness in unstable teams. Individuals with a normal baseline of emotions do not off themselves. Schools are safer than they ever have been (only 5% of kids report being afraid to go to school, down from 14% in the 90's) and acceptance of homo sexuality has never been higher.

  79. This went on for 2 years... there is no evidence of emails, letters or anything else that they tried to contact the school... just unreturned phone calls? They never tried to transfer him in another school, put him in counseling, went to the school and demanded had a parent teacher/counselor conference on the spot....? Bullying is very real, but it doesn't really seem like these parents tried very hard to help their child, and now he's gone. Such a tragedy on so many levels here.

  80. May God be with his family and friends. My kids have been bullied before, and they have fortunately got through it. The problem lies in disciplining kids, which teachers are being restricted because it is abuse. It is discipline if it gets a point through a kid. It is abuse when it leaves a long term mark, physically or mentally. Yes, there is a grey area. But, that is a chance I would rather take, then keep having kids be so out of control that bullying is a norm and not an exception. These kids who bullied in school now go on the internet trying to bully everybody, thinking they can keep getting away with it. And, the parent's also are kept from disciplining them. So, these kids become adults, thinking they can pick on anyone they want, and end up doing something that makes them end up in jail.

    So, we need to start disciplining, and teach parents and teachers how to discipline without abusing.

  81. What I'd like to know is what the parents are teaching their bully kids...or better yet what are they NOT teaching them. Maybe they themselves are bullies too?? My heart and prayers go out the Ashers family and all those that may experience bullying & teasing. God bless you Asher may you now rest in peace.

  82. This both disheartens and angers me. What the parents described was easily an assault case. God look at the smile on that kid's face ... :( ...Sometimes I wish the bullies will be given to the victims' parents to 'punish' - the sadder thing is, I'd really hate to be the parents of the bullies. Part if not a majority of the blame goes to them.

    This is so damn sad it makes me mad.

  83. Bullying and other aggressive behaviors on the part of "good" students seems to be a growning phenomenon. The responsiblity lies with the administration (cant keep hiding in the office or monitoring the telephone). Teachers are basically concerned with what goes on in the classroom, and most bullying, as in this case, is outside in the halls or on the playground or even the gym areas (athletic bullying is also on the rise).

    It is a simple matter to control elementary children, really,and this naturally extends into the high school level as the kids grow up. A few rules and regulations, such as no running in the halls, no hitting or bad language, and no pushing to get ahead in line (this last, in my experience, is something a lot of teachers do allow. I used to just make that kid go to the end of the line - takes about three days for them to get it) I believe it is important to have a few well trained campus aides, or yard duties, to help at recess and bus loading times when the teachers are not available. Children actually do appreciate some orderliness and FAIR reporting of problems that exist.

    This also leaves the administrators and teachers a chance to complete their work and perhaps go have a cup of coffee without worrying about leaving students unattended. Since these are minimum wage jobs the cost is not prohibitive and if hours are staggared there are no worries about benefits, either.

  84. This is so tragic. There seems to be an epidemic of young people taking their own lives. I wish the schools and families would impress on the children that there are always many options to choose in dealing with bullies and problems with interpersonal relationships. Suicide should never even be considered as an option. My heart goes out to the family of this young man. God Bless his soul!

  85. The administrators should be held on involuntary manslaughter charges if they were aware of the ongoing bullying. Legislation needs to enacted on both a state and federal level to put this practice to an end. It is preventable, when the penalties to teachers, and administrators are significant. One also must consider the culpability of the family in allowing their "bully" to continue their deviant and dangerous behavior. I have a child who had a complete mental collapse as a result of this, why, because he was born with a brain disorder, he was suicidal by the time he was in the 5th grade. A zero tolerance police must be enforced, one strike and you are expelled, with the parents paying a significant fine in order to get their child enrolled in an alternate school, Assault is a crime rather as a juvenile or an adult, why should children get a free pass.

  86. file criminal complaints and lawsuits against the parents of the bullies

  87. And the Fundamentalist bigots just threatened Arizona lawmakers to vote against anti-bullying laws, and they did along with the senile governor

  88. The one's that are bullying need to be brought to justice!!!!

    School systems HAVE to TAKE ACTION! These families should SUE their school systems and file police reports.

    Where are the guidence counselors?? School assemblies need to be done. Talks with each classroom about ZERO Tolerance of this. These kids have parents/or guardians. There needs to be parent meetings in school about ZERO Tolerance and any kid found tormenting another will be charged with criminal charges.

    The hallways NEED to be PATROLED as well as the Stairwells. The stairwells are the worst. If police officers need to be put into schools then so be it to protect our children.

    Just like there are math classes and science classes there should be antibullying classes in all schools given every day.

    ZERO tolerance. Contact the PTA; your local Congressman. Walks should be held to make people aware. Just like there are Breast Cancer walks. Publicity needs to be done. .

    Enough is Enough!!

    As a parent, we entrust schools to PROTECT our children. We are their ONLY advocate.

  89. I would have done this:

    1. Transferred my kid or Home Schooled him.
    2. Hire some thug to catch the bully after school and make his life a living hell
    3. Then go about my business

  90. People should give their kids pepper spray and let them loose on the bully. It will stop before it leads to suicide.

  91. it's what has always been wrong with this society of ours..thinking that we are better than the other person..we must be bigger prettier stronger richer smarter (well bullies aren't very smart) than our fellow American, so Hollywood and the media says..and our youth are going to do what is the "popular" thing to though we must look a certain way, behave as if the world revolves around us all the time and attack anyone who doesn't fit our standards. with YOU TUBE giving everyone easy access to humiliate our fellow Americans for anything and shows about the way to act according to Hollywood are just outrageous starts with the parents telling their children that this is not the way to behave and not to mimic what they see on E! MTV and other channels .everyone has become obsessed with making fun of each other and it needs to stop..everyone is different and there's nothing wrong with that

  92. This is another example why there should be a dress code in ALL schools until the students graduate. No one can make fun or harass you if you are all wearing the same clothing. The schools need to step it up a notch and discipline students who harass. If the schools can't control the children it means they are not being disciplined and controlled at home. If you don't stop the bullying in school they will continue to do so as an adult. We have a 39 yr old female in our town who bullies everyone on the BCA and city league Billiard teams but nobody will step up and stop her. She harasses people over face Book and when reported they do not close her account. She harasses friends via cell phone messages and text messages and the police do nothing with multiple reports. She steals a disabled person’s bank card to withdraw monies for her to gamble on. She physically assaulted three people in one year and she is not arrested even though there are multiple police reports. She physically and or sexually assaulted two more disabled people and she always talks herself out of trouble. It is said that she did this all throughout her school years and now she is employed with in-home elder care. What is going on in our society when schools, police and the court systems do not compare records to really see what is going on? This boy’s death will not stop his tormentors, someone needs to step in and hold them accountable and put it on their permanent records. If everyone turns a blind eye to this poor boys tormentor’s actions they will continue their reign of terror on others in their later years.

  93. Give me a break. There is no such thing as bullycide. Everyone gets bullied at some point in life. We're not all killing ourselves over it. The difference? Parents need to teach their kids how to deal with the real world instead of shielding them from it to the point of being socially dysfunctional. Not everyone is going to like you. Not everyone is going to accept you. You need to learn to deal with it. Where were these parents when this kid offed himself? He was at home when he did it. With a gun. Where was his supervision? How did he get a gun? These parents should be charged with neglect and involuntary manslaughter. While I agree that any physical violence on school grounds is not acceptable, neither is making a gun available to a 13 year old, or raising him to be incapable of dealing with the existence of other people in life.

  94. I think as a last resort his parents should have found another school. Changing locations is less costly than the life of their son. Bullying is bullying, and it's wrong because it hurts kids. The last thing this situation needs is a gay rights group trying to make this into strictly a "gay" issue.

  95. It is awful how much bullying goes on in schools nowadays. I'm starting to think my sister-in-law is right when she talks about home schooling my nephews.

  96. My niece at the age of 13 took her life in march, Im so sick of people of any age abusing a child. Bulling is a bad deal and should be punishable with a big jail sentence. I miss my niece so much and its a trajedy. My deepest regards for family.

    • !7 year old Tesa MiddleBrook of New Rhodes Lousiana hung herself from the football bleachers of Point Coupee High School last month. She is yet another victim of Bullycide. The young black girl was physically bullied by other black girls at the school because she was an honor student and didnt speak urban ebonic slang like them. In fact she was to recieve a full academic scholarship to a school in Arizona.

      So sad because family members had contacted the school about the problem to no avail!

    • My heart goes out to your family. I cannot imagine that a kid at 13 has the maturity to contemplate death. It goes to show the extent of stress caused by bullying that she felt she had to take her life. May she rest in peace .

    • I am so sorry about the loss of your niece. The loss of a child, be it your own or a family member or close friend is something no one should ever have to experience. I hope that one day bullying can be eradicated, in the meantime we ALL must do our best to keep our eyes and ears open for signs of bullying among children and be sure that we speak up for them if we know about it because often they don't know how. I talk to my son very often about being sure he speaks up if he should ever see anyone being bullied. My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your niece's family.

    • I am sorry to hear of your loss.

    • So sorry to hear. Its just horrible that other kids think they can harrass a child and beat then up. Then when it is acknowledged parents and school officials do nothing. My heart and prayers go out to you and your family

  97. Yet another sad example of a bullycide victim from the last week. The Rutgers University incident (a hate crime with roots in bullying behavior) also goes to show that bullies don't just 'grow up' or grow out of their bad behavior, but can carry it into their university years - bullying their college classmates and peers through degrading hazing incidents and juvenile pranks. This underscores why a collaborative approach that includes parental involvement, educator involvement and community and industry involvement is so important when it comes to raising responsible citizens - it truly does take a village to make sure our children are safe at home, at school, and on the social Web.

    • To have a safe and orderly campus is every administrator's responsibility. It doesn't take a villiage to do that, although hopefully the villiage will be supportive of the effort.

    • This article doesn't state what, if anything, happened to the bully in this case. Was he/she expelled or what? Seems to me a three day suspension would be the very least reprimand. If nothing was ever done about it, then here again the reponsiblity lies with the aministration.

    • condolences to the Truong family. I know this is a difficult time, God is with you and your/His son at this time.

      Second, if Asher's mother called once, this situation should have been addressed! Teachers/Admin Staff/Coaches/Counselors/Principals KNOW what to look out for and when a child is chronically bullied one of these positions IS aware and sees it. They just dont care enough about a childs self esteem and soul to end it. I was a bit of a bully to a girl that was awkward in middle school and trust me, my homeroom teacher kn ew it, saw it and put an end to it and humiliated me - Thank God! That girl is alive and well today.Bullying truly is for those who dont know where they belong. They are the lost ones, they are the ones who inflict misery...misery loves company so they go where they know they can feel greater than and pull one that is shy and vulnerable and try to or actually break them to feel better. Bullying is humiliating and should definitely be against the law. I have a child that was born with some malformations-IF anyone bullies him, God help you!!! Again to the family of Asher, your son was/is beautiful. I wish he knew how much-God Bless!!

    • There was a case in Canada in 79. A student at a boarding school went missing. The residence for the students was 14 miles away. The staff did not take attendance. A week later she was reported missing. Her body was later found. The school has to this day denied any responsibility for her going missing. At that time they had busing to and from the housing several times a day. But if you missed the bus you were told to hitchhike. The school manual even had recommendations on how.
      Institutions like these need to be held accountable.


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