Two Colorado parents are grieving the unthinkable loss of their 10-year-old daughter after she took her own life following allegations of severe bullying.
Ashawnty Davis, a promising fifth-grader at the Sunrise Elementary School part of the Cherry Creek School District in Aurora, Colorado, died Wednesday after doctors removed her from life support at a children’s hospital, KDVR reported. She reportedly hanged herself in a closet at home after a video of a fight involving her was posted to an app in October that left her under the thumb of merciless bullies.
Ashawnty reportedly only confronted another female student accused of bullying her in the cellphone video posted to the app Musical.ly, the report said.
“I saw my daughter was scared,” Latoshia Harris, Ashawnty’s mother, told to KDVR about her daughter being a victim of “bullycide.”
Ashawnty was vibrant, full of life and had a passion for basketball, the parents said. Things took a turn for the worse when she started facing bullies when the fight was caught on video.
“She was devastated when she found out that it had made it to Musical.ly,” Latoshia Harris, Ashawnty’s mother, said to KDVR. “My daughter came home two weeks later and hanged herself in the closet.”
The Davis family’s loss sheds light on harrowing statistics about bullying. More than one out of every five , or 20.8 percent, students report being bullied, according to the National Center for Educational Statistics.
An overwhelming amount of kids who are bullied don’t report it, according to many educators. Most bullied children are at a higher risk of anxiety, depression and other negative outcomes. Particularly, race-related bullying is “significantly associated with negative emotional and physical health effects,” according to work published in the Journal of Health Psychology.
The facts make it clear that children, like Davis, do not find safe spaces at schools away from torment. Her parents are now left to cling to only memories of their daughter.
“She was just a child of joy and she brought joy to everyone,” Anthony Davis, Ashawnty’s father, said.
The Cherry Creek School District issued a statement about the tragedy: “We were made aware of that video when a media outlet approached us with it. We took immediate action in response, turning the video over to police and addressing the matter with students. It should also be noted that the video did not take place during school hours.”
The school also said there’s a zero-tolerance policy for bullying. However, the Davis’ family, like most families of bullied children, don’t believe that the school has done enough to stop bullies.
It’s clear that several schools across the nation must go back to the drawing board to prevent harassment with better measures to prevent tragic deaths like Awshawnty’s. There are no shortcuts in making schools safe for children of all races and backgrounds who deserve to be protected.
Here's What These People Would Do To Improve Education
1. Akkitta Wellington CopelinSource:StudioBooth 1 of 46
2. Nancy WardSource:StudioBooth 2 of 46
3. Keith SchenckSource:StudioBooth 3 of 46
4. Patricia VestalSource:StudioBooth 4 of 46
5. Patrick WilliamsSource:StudioBooth 5 of 46
6. Michael Scott JonesSource:StudioBooth 6 of 46
7. Gloria Boyce-CharlesSource:StudioBooth 7 of 46
8. Karen AdebiyiSource:StudioBooth 8 of 46
9. Jacueline FosterSource:StudioBooth 9 of 46
10. Ronna MoraSource:StudioBooth 10 of 46
11. Lois SanfordSource:StudioBooth 11 of 46
12. Robert ThompsonSource:StudioBooth 12 of 46
13. Mark McPheeSource:StudioBooth 13 of 46
14. Brenda RickettsSource:StudioBooth 14 of 46
15. Shirley TolliverSource:StudioBooth 15 of 46
16. Raleigh SwintonSource:StudioBooth 16 of 46
17. Maxine LewisSource:StudioBooth 17 of 46
18. Rev. Kevin MCallSource:StudioBooth 18 of 46
19. Frank WyattSource:StudioBooth 19 of 46
20. Jaynaea Dillard-StrothersSource:StudioBooth 20 of 46
21. JewelSource:StudioBooth 21 of 46
22. Kayla WolfSource:StudioBooth 22 of 46
23. Tylik McMillianSource:studio booth 23 of 46
24. Rev. Dr. Jean C. RomulusSource:studio booth 24 of 46
25. Lynette & Dana WilliamsSource:studio booth 25 of 46
26. Dwayne LoveSource:studio booth 26 of 46
27. Marc DanielsSource:StudioBooth 27 of 46
28. Shaquille BurnsSource:StudioBooth 28 of 46
29. Robert GoreSource:StudioBooth 29 of 46
30. Dr. Charles H. F. DavisSource:StudioBooth 30 of 46
31. Kerry M. Williams Sr.Source:StudioBooth 31 of 46
32. Darrell PriceSource:StudioBooth 32 of 46
33. Pastor Warren A. HallSource:StudioBooth 33 of 46
34. Adrienne ChambersSource:StudioBooth 34 of 46
35. James GraySource:StudioBooth 35 of 46
36. Pastor Terry BronsonSource:StudioBooth 36 of 46
37. Faith T. BlackburneSource:StudioBooth 37 of 46
38. Ilesha GrahamSource:StudioBooth 38 of 46
39. Lamar GrantSource:StudioBooth 39 of 46
40. Rosa JacksonSource:StudioBooth 40 of 46
41. Patricia JordanSource:StudioBooth 41 of 46
42. Katherine BassettSource:StudioBooth 42 of 46
43. Cheryl AndersonSource:StudioBooth 43 of 46
44. Byron JonesSource:StudioBooth 44 of 46
45. Mario MiddletonSource:StudioBooth 45 of 46
46. Rashid MausiSource:StudioBooth 46 of 46