Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

2 Girls Charged in Cyberstalking Suicide

The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

Two Winter Haven girls, one 12 and the other 14, have been arrested in connection with the suicide death of Rebecca Ann Sedwick, also 12, on Sept. 10. The middle-schooler leapt to her death from a silo at an abandoned factory after the other girls allegedly persisted in urging her to kill herself.

As the Orlando Sentinel reports, Polk County deputies were goaded into the arrest after the 14-year-old boasted on Facebook that she knew she had bullied Rebecca into suicide and that she didn't care.

Investigators said the girls "repeatedly and maliciously" harassed Rebecca at Crystal Lake Middle School in Lakeland. Rebecca's parents moved her to a different school, but the stalking through social media continued, they said.

The 12-year-old, who reportedly expressed remorse, was placed on house arrest, the Sentinel reported. The 14-year-old was placed in the custody of the Department of Juvenile Justice.

Originally founded in December 2006 as an independent grassroots publication dedicated to coverage of health issues in Florida, Health News Florida was acquired by WUSF Public Media in September 2012.