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Gordon Allport

   
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CHOIRBOY HANGED HIMSELF AFTER YEARS OF BULLYING

A tormented choirboy hanged himself after suffering for years at the hands of school bullies, an inquest was told.
Darren Steele was burnt with cigarettes, battered with school text books and branded a homosexual during five years of abuse at two schools.
The talented 15 year old was found hanged in his bedroom next to a note naming those he blamed for his death.
'The real tragedy,' said his headmaster, 'was that his parents the school and his grand parents were not aware of his suffering.
It is very difficult to do anything about bullying without knowing it is going on'.

The inquest was told that the slightly built Darren was unable to stick up for himself when confronted by bullies because of his physique.

Three of his friends said the bubbly youngster was systematically tormented both physically and mentally at school.
One 16 year old friend said that a week before his death in March, 1998, Darren had told her that he could stand the pain of his bullying no longer. She said that he was frequently called "gayboy" and "poof" because he enjoyed cookery and drama.

During one English lesson he was whacked in the face with a textbook before being verbally abused.
The inquest heard how Darren, who had intended to go to catering school after taking his GCSE's, was bullied ever since leaving primary school. On one occasion, as he walked past a church, a gang of classmates burnt his head, back and school bag with cigarettes. On another occasion he was made to sit on the floor while boys mocked him.
After the boy's death at his home in Horninglow, police launched an investigation.
11 pupils were arrested on suspicion of harassment and countless others were questioned, but the Crown prosecution has decided not to take further action.

This is taken from the local paper 5/11/98

Antilocution verbal abuse
Darren for years at school both primary and secondary is called names , gay boy, bum boy, batty boy, fudge pusher, faggot
Use as many you feel appropriate and 'comfortable' with

Withdrawal
Darren is ignored
People don't sit next to him
Don't pass the ball to him etc.

Discrimination
People use what power they have to make his life hell
Don't tell him the homework
Won't lend pencils, books etc.

Physical Attack Graffiti
His books are covered with graffiti
When he goes into the toilet he sees all sorts of stuff Darren is a poof etc.
On way home from school outside church he is burnt with cigarettes
Hit in class etc

Suicide
That is what he does

 

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