Bullied boy leaves IM suicide notes

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Bullied boy leaves IM suicide notes

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A pair of football boots and an Argentina national football team uniform, recent gifts from his father, were put on the coffin of the bullied suicide victim at his funeral in Daegu yesterday. By Gong Jeong-sik

DAEGU - The horror of violent bullying drove a 15-year-old boy to suicide, the police said yesterday.

On Saturday, a boy surnamed Kim jumped to his death from the top floor of a 15-floor apartment building in Jisan-dong, Daegu, and his body was found by a security guard in a flower garden.

The Suseong Police Precinct in Daegu, which is investigating the case, has accessed KakaoTalk mobile messages that he exchanged with friends hours before the suicide.

The boy said in the messages he was bullied by a group of students with whom he played online football at Internet cafes and accused a 15-year-old middle school classmate surnamed Kim as one of the main abusers.

Friend: “You’re not seriously thinking about suicide are you?”

Kim: “Everything will end today. I think I must choose between death or escape.”

Friend: “Do you really need to fight with them?”

Kim: “They told me to show up. After 8 p.m. At school. They’ll beat me.”

Friend: “For what reason?”

Kim: “He said I show off too much when playing football.”

The police said that the messages were exchanged until 4:19 p.m. Saturday. On Monday, the police secured CCTV footage that showed Kim taking an elevator at 4:26 p.m. and getting off at the 15th floor of the building, which he apparently chose at random. The police think he jumped through a window at 7:05 p.m., after agonizing over the decision for two and a half hours.

The police confirmed that the victim and four other boys played an online football game at a PC bang from 9:16 a.m. to 11:05 a.m. Saturday.

The KakaoTalk group chat with five friends started at 12:24 p.m. Saturday and showed four hours of torment. “I’m getting crazy,” Kim wrote. “It has been two years already. I can’t live like this anymore.”

According to the police, Kim, the victim’s middle school classmate, berated him for playing poorly that morning and told him to come to the school later that night.

“Oh my poor boy,” Kim’s grandmother cried during the funeral yesterday. “We were going to see a football game at Daegu Stadium,” Kim’s father told the JoongAng Ilbo. “We never had a chance to watch a game together and I never imagined that my son’s first visit to the stadium would be like this.” The hearse containing the boy’s coffin took a loop around the stadium before proceeding to the graveyard.


By Hong Gweon-sam [sakwon80@joongang.co.kr]

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