Police investigate cyberbullying in 12-year-old’s suicide

By Rich Bockmann

Police were investigating whether cyberbullying led to the suicide of a 12-year-old Queens Village girl earlier this week.

Gabrielle Molina was found inside her home Wednesday hanging from the ceiling fan, police said.

Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said the investigators were looking into whether the young girl had been bullied online.

“She did write a suicide note and there was information in the suicide note concerning bullying, cyber-bullying,” he said.

Investigators took two computers from the girl’s home in search for clues.

City Councilman Mark Weprin (D-Oakland Gardens), who represents the neighborhood and authored the city’s anti-bullying law, said Gotham’s schools still have a long way to go in order to eradicate bullying.

“I was saddened to learn today about the untimely death of 12-year-old Gabrielle Molina. My heart and prayers go out to her family and loved ones,” he said in a statement released Thursday. “As a sponsor of the anti-bullying legislation in the City Council, I am trying to eradicate all forms of bullying in our school communities. Every school across this city needs an effective anti-bullying program to help end our culture of cruelty that continues to destroy the lives of our children.”

The law, signed in the summer of 2011, authorizes the city Human Rights Commission to conduct education on cyberbullying in schools, libraries and government agencies.

Mayoral candidate Bill Thompson said school communities have to crack down on bullying.

“Before any more lives are lost, before another parent has to bury a child, we must make our schools safe for every student. All of us – teachers, parents, and leaders – are responsible for making classrooms safe learning environments for our children,” he said. “The Department of Education must act to end bullying in schools by assigning dedicated staff tasked with combating bullying, and provide regular updates on steps to protect students and families from this assault.”

Reach reporter Rich Bockmann by e-mail at [email protected] or by phone at 718-260-4574.

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