Two Charged in Case of 17 Year-Old Rehtaeh Parsons, Who Hanged Herself After Rape
Two 18-year-olds will face charges of child pornography in relation with the case of a 17-year-old girl who committed suicide after being gang raped, and then bullied online.
The family of Rehtaeh Parsons attributes her suicide last April to the lasting impact of her 2011 sexual assault, which was photographed and shared online and via phone — and the ensuing onslaught of cyberbullying that followed.
The suspects, who were arrested near their homes in Halifax, Nova Scotia were not named. They were released and are scheduled to appear in youth court on August 15.
The alleged attack by four boys took place in 2011 when Parsons was 15 years old. A police investigation followed but no charges were filed. The case was reopened in April after Parsons hanged herself.
"A young girl has died in what was a tragic set of circumstances. We all need to reflect on how we as a community can come together in Rehtaeh's memory and see what we can do to work together to support our youth," said Chief Superintendent Roland Wells of Halifax District RCMP in a statement Thursday night.
Earlier this week, cybersafety legislation inspired by the case was passed in Nova Scotia. The new legislation will allow the victims of cyberbullying to sue their attackers.