Loved ones of teen girl bullied to death demand answers

(Source: WMC Action News 5)
(Source: WMC Action News 5)

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - A group of about 20 or so people gathered outside of Riverview K-8 School on Thursday, demanding answers for why a 14-year-old student was bullied to death.

Alexcia Smith's mother, Tanya, said her daughter had been bullied since the third day of school. On Tuesday after school, police said she took her own life.

Tanya said she went to the school 2-3 times a week to complain about the bullying and said her daughter was constantly teased.

"They broke my child to no return," Tanya said. "What am I supposed to do?"

Tanya said administrators didn't do enough to protect her.

"She went to those administrators," Tanya said. "She told them. She made journals."

Those journals have not been released to the family.

Tanya said her daughter was chased home by kids with sticks, and last week someone broke her glasses.

"When she walked down the hallway they slapped her on the back of her head, talk about her mama and stuff," said student Laquincy Brown.

Last week, Alexcia was punished for fighting. She was not allowed to participate in any 8th-grade-week activities, including the prom.

Tanya believes that was the breaking point.

"You broke my child until she didn't want to live anymore, but you still get to go home and see your kids," Tanya said. "I have to lay my baby in the ground for things we could have worked together. That is what we supposed to do."

WMC reached out to Shelby County Schools for a comment, who said in a statement their thoughts are with the family.

Their statement also said:

"We take all reports of bullying very seriously, and any time a family or student makes a claim, it is thoroughly investigated. Families are notified and brought in to help resolve any reported issues"

Friday morning, the school is planning a special program to remember the 14-year-old who was set to graduate 8th grade at the end of the year.

Twenty-eight percent of 6th to 12th graders experience some form of bullying, according to StopBullying.gov.

It's a serious problem that could have horrible consequences.

"Hug your children today and tell them you love them," Tanya said.

Click here for more information about suicide prevention.

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