Police in Amhert, N.Y. on Tuesday announced there would be no charges filed against the bullies who allegedly drove 14-year-old Jamey Rodemeyer to commit suicide on Sept. 18.
“I’m not satisfied, to be honest with you,” said Amherst Police Chief John Askey, admitting his disappointment after completeing hundreds of hours on interviews investigating events that may have led to Jamey’s suicide.
“We can’t make something out of something that isn’t there,” Askey said, according to the Buffalo News.
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Police investigated a total of seven bullying incidents involving Jamey, two at Heim Middle School and five at Williamsville North High School, he said.
But no charges will be brought because all of the alleged perpetrators were juvenile classmates, either 14 or 15 years old, who could not be held criminally accountable for what would be considered violations had they been adults.
In addition, Askey said:
- The statute of limitations has expired regarding two incidents that occurred in sixth and seventh grade at Heim Middle School.
- In a few incidents, evidence was lacking that a reported offense was actually committed, or information was received second or third hand and the actual perpetrator could not be identified.
- In all five incidents that occurred at North High School, neither Jamey nor his friends reported the bullying incidents to school administrators or his parents. The incidents were reported to police after Jamey died. And of the incidents that were reported, none involved threats.
- Jamey is not alive to attest to any of the incidents involved, which most frequently involved subjecting the teen to gay slurs. Jamey had identified himself as bisexual and gay over the course of the last year prior to his death.
“In most cases, you need a victim and a complaint,” Askey said.More: The Buffalo News
Police said their investigation included a forensic analysis of Jamey’s computer, and found no pattern of “an ongoing course of conduct” of online abuse or cyberbullying in the days most immediately leading up to his death.
According to Jamey’s parents and friends, the bullying had begun during middle school — he had told his parents, sister and closest friends that the hateful comments were mostly all directed at his sexual orientation.
Jamey often blogged about the bullying he was suffering at school, but tormentors also followed him online and left messages on his Formspring page calling him “gay and ugly,” and encouraging him to kill himself.
Jamey was found dead outside his home Sunday morning, Sept. 18 of an apparent suicide.
The decision to close Jamey’s case was made after consulting with Erie County District Attorney Frank Sedita and those involving the prosecution of Erie County Family Court cases, Askey said.
Jamey’s parents were informed of the decision not to prosecute earlier today.