The parents of an 8-year-old Ohio boy who hanged himself in January have filed a civil rights and wrongful death lawsuit against Cincinnati Public Schools.
The lawsuit claims that the boy’s school did not adequately respond to the fact that Gabriel Taye was being bullied, they also tried to cover up the brutal bullying incident in the bathroom that left the 8-year-old unconscious,, reported WCPO. Two days after the bathroom incident, Gabriel would hang himself with a necktie.
Video of the shocking bathroom encounter shows a group of bullies beating up an unconscious Gabriel, with students stepping over his body and pointing at, nudging and kicking him for about five minutes before an assistant principal finds him on the bathroom floor.
The suit says school officials “deliberately withheld vital information from his mother, including that he had been assaulted, lost consciousness for a considerable period of time, and was at risk of a serious head injury. Defendants informed his mother only that Gabe had fainted in the boy’s restroom and had recovered completely.”
His mother, Cornelia Reynolds, took him to the hospital later that day when he began to show signs of nausea.
You can watch the security video below:
Cincinnati Public Schools said in a statement Monday that it was aware of the lawsuit, but did not offer any further comments.
“Our hearts are broken by the loss of this child, and our thoughts are with his parents and extended family. He was an outstanding young man, and this is a great loss for his family and our school community,” the school district said.
After Gabriel’s death, a Cincinnati police homicide detective reviewed the security footage from Gabriel’s school, Carson Elementary. According to CNN, the detective acknowledged that he saw “bullying” and that the behavior of the kids involved “could even rise to the level of criminal assault.”
Back in May, school officials released the footage from the bathroom to the public after the detective’s email describing what it showed started making the rounds. However, officials insisted in a statement, “It is our firm position that the allegations portrayed in the media are not supported by the video.”
Jennifer Branch, an attorney representing Reynolds, said that the school said that the young boy had fainted and mentioned nothing about what happened in the bathroom.
The school officials story varies. They claim in a statement that a school nurse called Reynolds to pick up Gabriel and take him to the hospital, although the statement does not clarify what was wrong with Gabriel at the time of the incident.
Cincinnati Public Schools claim their employees followed proper procedures.
“The school nurse checked Gabriel’s vital signs, which were normal. She also contacted Gabriel’s mother and asked her to pick him up and take him to the hospital to be checked out,” the district said in a statement.
The lawsuit also claims there is “a culture of violence at Carson Elementary School that the school hid from the parents.”
This tragic death could have been avoided if the school would have just stopped the bullying like any school is expected to do. Instead they tried to cover it up and now an 8 year old boy is dead.
(Article By Jeremiah Jones)