Teen Rape Victim Killed Herself Over Bullying: Parents

Nova Scotia justice minister calls for case review
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 10, 2013 9:37 AM CDT
Teen Rape Victim Killed Herself Over Bullying: Parents
A Facebook picture of Parsons on a tribute page.   (Facebook)

A 17-year-old Nova Scotia rape victim killed herself because she was relentlessly bullied about it, her parents say. "She would not be gone today if that didn’t happen—not just the rape," her mother tells the Globe and Mail. "What made it so much worse is the people who turned their back on her, the name-calling." An official investigation into Rehtaeh Parsons' case resulted in no charges, but Nova Scotia's justice minister has called for a review. "I am deeply saddened—as, I think, are all Nova Scotians—by the death of this young woman," he says.

Rehtaeh was allegedly raped while spending time with several boys at a family friend's house. A photograph emerged of her vomiting during an alleged sexual assault. "Everybody had (the photo). She came home and had a breakdown," her mother says. Parsons never returned to her high school, but bullies began targeting her after she told police about the incident. She started getting emails from both boys and girls labeling her a slut, her mother says. Ultimately, she locked herself in the bathroom and attempted suicide; her parents took her off life support a few days ago. “In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends,” Rehtaeh wrote on a Facebook post. (More Rehtaeh Parsons stories.)

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