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Sheriff: 12-year-old's death ruled suicide

12:51 PM, Sep 12, 2013   |    comments
A 12-year-old girl was found dead at a defunct cement plant on Tuesday, and her mother said she is the victim of extreme cyber-bullying. Photo courtesy of WESH-TV
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POLK COUNTY, Fla. -- The death of a Polk County 12-year-old has been ruled a suicide.

The body of Becca Sedwick was found at a former Lakeland cement plant on Tuesday.

Her mother said she'd been victimized by bullies, and Polk County sheriff Grady Judd called her death one of the most disturbing his team of investigators has ever seen.

She was reported missing Monday when she didn't return home from school. Early Tuesday morning, her body was found at a defunct cement plant not far from her house.

During a news conference, Judd said Sedwick jumped to her death from a cement mixing tower that had three levels. It isn't known which level she jumped from, according to Judd.

Judd also said how Sedwick was bullied at school because of a boy, even physically pushed, and how the school changed schedules to try to distance the girls and the issue.

Sedwick received counseling and eventually left school, but then was cyber bullied with hateful messages, the sheriff said.

Judd mentioned how before her death, Sedwick used social media to reach out to a friend.

"She posted she was dead, that 'I am jumping, and I can't take it anymore,'" said Judd.

The sheriff said his team is trying to unravel the case, but are dealing with what he described as "girl talk" and dealing with social media outlets, some of which are based in foreign countries.


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