Great Britain

Mum says terrified son, 15, was ‘driven to take his own life by Snapchat bullies who threatened to shoot him’

'SCARED TO DEATH'

A TEEN boy took his own life after bullies on Snapchat threatened to shoot him, his mother has claimed.

Jack Parker, 15, was found dead in the woods near his home in Wigan in July.

Karen Robinson, his mum, said her son took his own life because he was being threatened by bullies on Snapchat.

One Snapchat message sent to Jack's former girlfriend said: "Your boyfs getting jumped xoxo Let him know ye."

Karen said that moments before Jack took his own life, he called her and read out a string of messages he received on Snapchat.

Snapchat messages are deleted the moment they are read but his ex-girlfriend claims he had received threats to come to his house and shoot him.

In a voice note to his ex-girlfriend, Jack expressed worries about lockdown, the relationship and going back to school in September.

Karen, 43, told Manchester Evening News: "I want to get this out there, if it helps another child not getting bullied. I don't want another family to go through this. It's awful."

The teaching assistant said: "Thinking about what he had done to himself, he was being threatened. He was frightened. He wasn't eating properly and he wasn't sleeping properly."

Karen said he believes her 6ft 3in tall son was terrified of leaving the house.

The mum-of-two added:  "I think the thought of someone coming to the house frightened him to death really."

Karen has launched an online petition to increase the minimum age for Snapchat from 13 to 18.

YOU'RE NOT ALONE

EVERY 90 minutes in the UK a life is lost to suicide.

It doesn't discriminate, touching the lives of people in every corner of society - from the homeless and unemployed to builders and doctors, reality stars and footballers.

It's the biggest killer of people under the age of 35, more deadly than cancer and car crashes.

And men are three times more likely to take their own life than women.

Yet it's rarely spoken of, a taboo that threatens to continue its deadly rampage unless we all stop and take notice, now.

That is why The Sun launched the You're Not Alone campaign.

The aim is that by sharing practical advice, raising awareness and breaking down the barriers people face when talking about their mental health, we can all do our bit to help save lives.

Let's all vow to ask for help when we need it, and listen out for others... You're Not Alone.

If you, or anyone you know, needs help dealing with mental health problems, the following organisations provide support:

The heartbroken mum wrote:  "He was a loving, funny, intelligent boy who was also very sensitive.

"So sensitive that he couldn’t tell me about the constant bullying he was receiving by people on Snapchat and other social media. Due to the age of the bullies, there is no consequence!"

Greater Manchester Police said there were no suspicious circumstances surrounding the death.

An inquest at Bolton's Coroners' Court confirmed an inquest has been opened, but no date has been fixed.

A Snapchat spokesperson told MEN: "No-one deserves to be bullied and our hearts go out to Jack’s loved ones. We designed Snapchat as a place that prioritises friendship and default settings make it impossible for someone to receive a message from an account they have not added as a friend.

"Any Snapchatter experiencing bullying can easily report it to us right in the app and our safety team will do their best to help.

"We also provide in-app mental health support with a feature called Here For You, where Snapchatters can get expert advice from organisations such as Young Minds, the Samaritans and the Diana Award."


If you, or anyone you know, needs help dealing with mental health problems the Samaritans can be contacted on 116 123, or visit Mind's website

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