Shiga police question 3 boys accused of bullying suicide victim
Shiga prefectural police on Wednesday questioned the three boys accused of bullying a 13-year-old boy who killed himself last October.
Police were quoted as saying that two of three boys denied bullying the victim and said they were only fooling around, NHK reported.
This week, police began questioning the victim’s classmates, their parents and teachers on a voluntary basis to find out the extent of the bullying and to clarify what the school in Otsu did in response to two questionnaires it gave to students last October and November after the boy committed suicide.
Although 16 students answered that they saw the boy being bullied about two weeks before his death, the school maintained that it did not think bullying was the cause of the death. However, earlier this week, school officials and the Otsu Board of Education reversed their stance and conceded that bullying most likely drove the boy to leap to his death from a building last Oct 11.
In the questionnaires, the boy’s classmates said that three bullies routinely forced him to “practice” killing himself. According to the answers, they punched the boy in the toilet, forced him to eat dead bees, pulled down his pants and taped his mouth.
The latest police action comes after they refused to do anything last year after the father complained. The boy’s father has filed a criminal complaint with the police, charging the boys with assault, extortion and theft, his lawyer told a news conference, NHK reported.