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‘Slut-Shamed’ 15-Year-Old Girl Kills Herself

‘Slut-Shamed’ 15-Year-Old Girl Kills Herself

“I cant, im done, I give up.” 15-year-old Felicia Garcia tweeted on Monday. Two days later, she killed herself by falling in the path of a train at the Huguenot station on Staten Island. The New York Daily News reports that Garcia, a freshman at Tottenville High School, was literally “bullied to death” by her classmates, right up to her fatal jump off the train platform in front of nearly 200 students, some of them yelling “sexually explicit jeers” at her.

Garcia was living with a foster family as her parents had passed away; she was a chronic runaway who had been reported missing seven times. Her Instagram account bore signs of her unhappiness in the form of a photo of herself with the words “Depressed” over her eyes and the caption, “Just because someone is smiling doesn’t make them happy.”

As a classmate, Kayla Gonzalez, told SILive.com, “She was like an outgoing person. She was always happy and I’ve never really see her miserable.”

A Sad, Too-Short Life

According to police, Garcia had sex with four football players at a post-game party on Saturday. The New York Daily News says that, on Monday, Garcia told a friend that the sex was consensual. Afterwards, two 17-year-old football players kept harassing her. As a senior named Victoria also told the New York Post, the bullying continued online: “This poor girl was called a slut. She was teased on Facebook.” A friend of Garcia who asked to have her identity withheld said that students “just kept bullying her and bullying her.”

School officials learned of the bullying and, on Wednesday, arranged a mediation session with one of the 17-year-old boys and a counselor. The 17-year-old denied harassing Garcia who apparently ran into him afterwards and “exchanged words.” It was after this that Garcia went to the train station and took her life.

A senior, Alissa Compitello, saw Garcia on the way to the train station and said she was smiling, “like everything was going to be okay.”

Another student who was on the platform beside Garcia said that her last words were “Finally, it’s here.”

Students Questioned About Bullying Garcia

The four football players with whom Garcia allegedly had sex are being questioned by detectives, as are the students accused of harassing her verbally and on Facebook and other social media sites. A police source says that the four football players are saying that “at no time was the victim pressured into doing anything.”

The Tottenville Board of Education has sent a crisis team to the high school and a spokesperson for New York City’s Department of Education has been informed of Felicia’s death. The New York Police Department is also reportedly investigating claims that bullying was a key reason for Garcia’s suicide.

As SILive.com says, Garcia died “roughly 10 months after 15-year-old Amanda Cummings was fatally injured after jumping in front of a city bus on Hylan Boulevard.” Cummings’ family say she was “bullied and tormented by her peers” but police say they could “find no evidence” that bullying played a role in her death.

How Many More Times Do We Have To Hear About Tragedies Like This?

As Garcia’s friend, 15-year-old Stephanie Imparato, said ”I hope the football team feels guilty for what they did to her. They were torturing her. How can you go through life being verbally assaulted like that? These guys are cruel and malicious.”

Will detectives take into account that Garcia was younger than the football players with whom she allegedly she had sex — who can know what really went on? Will Garcia’s death be a wake-up call that, whatever school districts are doing about bullying, it is not enough?

What’s especially heartbreaking, and sickening, is that, even as Garcia was taking her own life, classmates were still allegedly bullying her. Based on her Twitter and Instagram postings, Garcia was trying to communicate her despair but no one realized how hard she was crying for help, until it was too, too late. On Wednesday night, Garcia’s friends retweeted her final “I cant, im done, I give up” message, also writing their own messages including “The saddest part about this tweet is that no one knew she actually meant it.”

 

Related Care2 Coverage

Over 20,000 Instances of Bullying Reported in New Jersey

15-Year-Old Bullying Suicide Victim’s Family Sues School

Bullied Teen Girl Gets 40K Worth of Plastic Surgery

 

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Photo by Seth W.

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283 comments

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2:21AM PST on Feb 3, 2013

such a sad story, bullying is never justified and should be treated as a crime

6:04PM PST on Dec 2, 2012

These "boys" at 17 are young men ( degenerate little bastards) who should act like it and not the little cowards they are. Also they should be charged with accessory to manslaughter for tormenting a young woman who obviously just wanted to be loved..

10:37AM PST on Nov 7, 2012

Karen H. I would do it all the time. but good people want to make me feel bad for thinking any gender and sex going on sexual adventures of massive porportions are slutty. others think it is beautiful for a 13 year old boy and girl to had sex with 600 people each.

no class. but we are just ravinous animals. no room for story book romance and gentleman and gentlelady activity. just action action action that a child pornographer could dream of.

it's their fault for bragging about it on line. I point and go "see, the kids want dirty talk. why do I go to jail for some bedroom humor or telling them a raunchy joke? idiots"

3:00PM PDT on Nov 2, 2012

Scary to think my daughter will be in high school one day...... a day very far away, like 15 years away... but still, that day will eventually come and goodness knows what sort of cyber or futuristic social networking system will be operating at that time. Bullying is just getting way out of control with all the 'advances' of technology to harrass and stalk people...I'd like to say teachers and school admin.'s should do so much more but what can they possibly do? They are very limited to only having control on school grounds.

But I personally think that this school's admin. just delaying their football game a few days was ridiculous. Those kids should be punished in some way, especially if their is proof of such harassment on the girl's Facebook page.

11:16AM PDT on Nov 2, 2012

As a parent of a bullied child I was left with no other alternative (the school did nothing to protect my child since the bully's mom worked for the school board) than to remove my child from the school system and start homeschooling. This is a school system that has won "best school system in the state" 8 years in a row. Property taxes are extremely high here because of the schools and we moved here for those schools So as an only parent, I work weekend nights at the hospital and teach him during the week. It's not easy but I wasn't going to wait around for him to become a statistic. This isn't an option for everyone but until the schools put an end to the bullies' rein there will always be tragic stories like this girl's.

5:44AM PDT on Nov 2, 2012

I'm just speechless at this... it's so sad.

6:55AM PDT on Nov 1, 2012

Horrible.

6:03AM PDT on Nov 1, 2012

No one will ever know for sure what was in her mind, but we all know that bullying can be devastating and we also know that regardless of the sexual activity of teenagers, a 15 year old is really not FULLY capable of making sexual consent decisions. There are probably multiple reasons why this girl took her life, but I am reasonably sure that sex with four boys and being taunted about and bullied was part of the cause.

3:17AM PDT on Nov 1, 2012

sad

10:31PM PDT on Oct 31, 2012

Joanna M, I think you’re looking at the wrong side of the equation here. You’re wondering why so many young people are committing suicide and why they can’t cope. This is the age of technology. Back when I was bullied in school, it was just the kids in my class. Now kids put things on the internet and it’s not just your class or your school, but kids from all around the world. When a vulnerable and depressed teen is cyber bullied by people he/she doesn’t even know, it compounds the pain and makes them wonder, “What’s wrong with me? Everybody hates me!” because that’s what it feels like. The schools don’t know how to deal with it and sweep it under the rug and say, “Kids will be kids”, and like Lynn L says, male athletes are protected and coddled and viewed as “just boys doing what boys will do” without facing consequences. It was that way when I was in high school and college, and it’s the same today. Hail the conquering athletic hero!

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