Phoebe Prince Bullying Case Over: No Jail for 5 Teens

She hanged herself in January; charges dropped against sixth teen
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted May 5, 2011 4:22 PM CDT
Sharon Chanon Velazquez, 17, is tearful during a victim impact statement by Anne O'Brien, mother of Phoebe Prince.   (AP Photo/Michael S. Gordon, Pool)
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(Newser) – Five teens accused of bullying teenage classmate Phoebe Prince into suicide accepted plea deals today and yesterday and will get probation and community service but no jail time. Charges have been dropped against a sixth teen accused of statutory rape, notes AP. Phoebe's mother once again publicly addressed her daughter's tormentors today with an emotional statement, reports the Boston Globe.

“Phoebe tried to be strong, but sometimes all people want to do is break you,” said Anne O'Brien. Referring to one of the accused teens at today's hearing, she said the girl had "terrified my daughter with her anger." Afterward, the teen "began to gently cry, continuing for 20 seconds or so in a still courtroom," writes Peter Schworm of the Globe. Phoebe, a 15-year-old Irish immigrant, hanged herself in January. Click to read an account of the case by Emily Bazelon at Slate, who has written extensively on cyberbullying.

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