London 5th Grader Commits Suicide; Parents Say Kids Bullied Daug - NBC4: Columbus, Ohio News, Weather, and Sports (WCMH-TV)

London 5th Grader Commits Suicide; Parents Say Kids Bullied Daughter

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The London Police Department is investigating the death of an 11-year-old girl.

Early Sunday morning, officers responded to a call at 44 N. Walnut St., where they found 5th grader Hailey Petee dead as a result of self strangulation.

Hailey's mother Melinda Groce told NBC4 that her daughter took her own life because she was bullied on her school bus.

"They pulled her hair. They called her names. They made fun of her because she wore glasses and had ADHD," said Melinda.

Hailey attended London Elementary School. Her mother said she enjoyed drawing and singing. Despite her disability, she enjoyed going to school.

"She was looking forward to joining 4-H this year. She wanted to show guinea pigs. She wanted to work with animals when she grew up," said Melinda through tears.

Melinda said the bullying got so bad that she had to be removed from her daughter's school bus after confronting the driver. She claims the school district did nothing except tell her they would look into it. Melinda said she even changed Hailey's bus to no avail.

"They'll see what they could do to take care of it. That's all I heard, every time," said Melinda

NBC4 contacted London City Schools about the bullying of Hailey. The school district responded with the following statement:

"The London City School District is mourning the tragic loss of the life of Hailey Petee. Hailey was a 5th grade student at London Elementary School. As a faculty we extend our sympathy to Hailey's family and friends. London City Schools will also have grief counselors available for students and staff members.

The school district is cooperating with local law enforcement officials in their investigation. We respect the privacy of the family during this time of bereavement and will refrain from any additional comments."

The family is holding a viewing for Hailey at The Church of Christ and Christian Union at  180 Center Street, London Ohio. It's from 2-8 p.m. on Wednesday. Hailey Petee's funeral is Thursday at 11 a.m. at the same location. Funeral arrangements are being handled by Eberle-Fisher Funeral Home.

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