Published: Sun, May 14, 2017
USA | By Kelli Rowe

Attorneys say 8-year-old was bullied before killing himself

Attorneys say 8-year-old was bullied before killing himself

Gabe Taye was captured on video falling to the floor outside a boy's bathroom at Carson Elementary School on January 24. But as the school has so far declined to release the video, precisely what it shows is in dispute.

The boy killed himself at his Cincinnati home January 26.

Now the boy's mother - who only recently found out about the video - wants some answers. Like, was there any connection between the bathroom incident and Gabriel's suicide?

Carla Leader, a lawyer for the family, told ABC Cincinnati affiliate WCPO-TV Thursday it was unclear on the video whether Gabriel had hit his head on the wall or the floor. The boy then jumps in the face of another student in a "menacing manner".

But the school says it has no culpability in what happened to Gabriel and instead stands by a different version of events - one where the school nurse told Reynolds to take her son to the hospital. His mother found him in his bedroom, hanged by one of his neckties. He had hanged himself using his own neckties.

In the months following Gabriel's suicide, his mother was unaware of the encounter in the school bathroom. Despite their unethical actions, the school believes that they followed protocol. Why was the video released so late? Branch said that a legal team is now working to determine whether to file a lawsuit and who would be named as the defendant in such an event.

Dr. Lakshmi Sammarco, the Hamilton County, Ohio, coroner, said "We will review all the new info including the video when it's provided".

"Cincinnati Public Schools is reviewing with faculty and staff the procedures regarding adult supervision in the restrooms", the district said in its statement.

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"Gabe was a very loving little boy who always had a smile on his face and would bring a smile to your face", Emery said. "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 its statement.

On the day of the assault, his mother Cornelia Reynolds had no idea of what really happened to her son. When his mother asked him what happened at school the day he was bullied, he said he didn't know, her attorneys said.

"If the school had told mom that 'your son was assaulted, ' 'your son had lost consciousness for seven minutes, ' she would have immediately taken him to the hospital and had him examined", Branch told the station.

The school released video of the incident on Friday. As all are aware, no charges resulted from that investigation.

It is not clear how soon after the altercation school officials watched the security camera footage of the bathroom.

Gabriel Taye was on the ground unconscious for five minutes.

"No parent should ever have to question the transparency of school officials when it comes to the health and safety of their child", said a statement from Ohio Senate President Larry Obhof, Republican of Medina, Ohio, and Sen.

Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters said his office is looking into possible charges in the case.

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"There needs to be a lot more response in that school to what is going on and the parents need to know what's going on", Leader said.

"What we are investigating is grounds to file a lawsuit and looking to see if the school district did anything to contribute to his death", Branch said. "Covering it up and pretending it's not happening isn't doing anyone any good".

Gabriel's mother agreed to identify her child publicly but did not wish to release her own name. Teachers described him as a positive, neat, well-spoken and behaved student. New information from a reopened coroner's investigation could go into that section.

According to her attorneys, Reynolds didn't learn of the bullying until the attorneys received a copy of a police investigative file that contained an email from a homicide detective to school officials describing the surveillance video.

Shocking surveillance footage from a Cincinnati school shows an 8-year-old boy apparently being pulled headfirst into a restroom wall by a bully - and his classmates kicking and prodding his motionless body.

"I just think it needs to stop, and something needs to be done", she said.

Until the investigation is over, she said, his death would be ruled a homicide. If I could, I would give anything to have him back. "That was his way". Reynolds continued. "He just didn't know how to tell me".

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