Grieving Mother Learns That Elementary School Hid Bullying Incident After Gabriel Taye’s Suicide

Speechless, to say the least. The Cincinnati Enquirer reported Wednesday (May 10) on the unfortunate suicide of an eight-year-old son and student, Gabriel Taye, which occurred earlier this year.

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The Cincinnati news outlet obtained a report from the Ohio town’s police department which contains a surveillance video outside of the pre-kindergarten through sixth grade, Carson Elementary School bathroom. A veteran homicide detective, Eric Karaguleff, provided a timeline description of the video. After eleven minutes, a boy wearing a red and grey coat enters the restroom. Six seconds after, “kids flee the restroom.” Before encountering Gabriel, the assailant hits a boy in the stomach and threatens another. When Gabriel arrives, he “appears to shake hands” with the assailant, but the boy in the red and grey coat yanks Gabriel to the ground and “appears to celebrate and rejoice in his behaviour” while Gabriel lay motionless, as Karaguleff details.

Gabriel Taye was on the ground unconscious for five minutes.

Karaguleff reports “many students stepped over, pointed, mocked, nudged, kicked..” Gabriel during the time he was on the ground. It wasn’t until the assistant principal, Jeff McKenzie, rushed into the restroom to find Gabriel, that he received assistance.

On the day in question, January 24, Gabriel’s mother was alerted by someone from the elementary school saying that her son had “fainted” and was in the nurse’s office with normal vital signs. Although the school didn’t disclose the nature of the incident at that time, they did advise the mother to take him to the hospital “to be checked out,” as reported by the New York Post. Gabriel’s mother took him home, where he began to become nauseous and vomited twice. She then took Gabriel to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center.

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Gabriel only disclosed to his mother that his stomach was hurting. His mother believes he was unaware of what happened that day.

The hospital released Gabriel around 6 a.m. the next morning (Jan. 25) and ruled his condition as the stomach flu. Gabriel went to school the next day (Jan. 26), but around 5:30 p.m. that night, he tied a loop in his neck tie and hung himself from his bunk bed in his home.

The 750-student school failed to disclose to Gabriel’s mother the events that occurred that day, preventing her from her parental duty of adequately adhering to her child’s state. Despite their unethical actions, the school believes that they followed protocol. But, they are “concerned about the length of time that [Gabriel] lay motionless and the lack of adult supervision at the scene.”

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The family’s attorney, Carla Leader, describes Gabriel as a “happy-go-lucky kid” who displayed no signs of mental issues.

Despite their initial refusal, Cincinnati Public Schools announced that they will release the surveillance video possibly later today.

UPDATE:

Authorities have released surveillance footage of the incident: