Boy Told School Authorities About Being Bullied Was Punched To Death Days Later

Boy Told School Authorities About Being Bullied Was Punched To Death Days Later

His uncle and aunt have filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the Moreno Valley Unified School District.

A little boy who was being bullied decided to do the right thing and seek help. So, he told his middle school officials about it and hoped that would be the end of it. But, a mere two weeks later, the boy was killed. Diego Stolz, 13, died after he was punched and abused by two teenagers at Moreno Valley Unified School District, California, US. Stolz, who has no parents, was raised by his aunt and uncle Juana and Felipe Salcedo. According to them, Stolz and his teacher had lodged a complaint about the bullying just four days before the incident. According to People, Stolz was relieved that he'd finally opened up and told someone about the trauma he'd been going through. 



“He was so relieved that he had talked to someone,” Stolz’s cousin Jazmin said at a news conference on Tuesday. “We were on our drive back home, and I turned around and I told him, ‘I’m always going to defend you. You know that, right?’ And he nodded his head, ‘I know.'” Two weeks later, Diego became a victim of bullying as he lost his life.  During the press conference on Tuesday, Diego’s family announced that they were filing a wrongful death lawsuit against the Moreno Valley Unified School District. 



His family has accused the district of failing to adequately respond to Diego’s complaint. “That’s what’s unbelievably devastating to this family, that this could have been prevented,” the family’s attorney, Dave Ring, said. “It could have been prevented if this school took bullying seriously.” Shockingly, the bullies and Diego were once friends. For reasons unknown, they began bullying him in the seventh grade.  



The two 13-year-old boys have been charged with voluntary manslaughter and assault by means of force likely to produce great bodily injury. According to the suit, when Diego reported being “verbally and physically” bullied by the group of boys to Landmark Middle School’s vice principal on September 13th, he was told he could take off the following day of school, which was a Friday, and return on Monday. Meanwhile, the boys would be suspended for three days, beginning that Monday, and would have their class schedules changed.



But that did not happen. The suit alleges that when Diego returned to class on September 16, his bullies were still there. During lunch the same day, Diego was brutally attacked by his bullies. It seems to be unclear if the boys did this because Deigo had gone to the officials to complain about them. The cellphone video taken of the attack shows Diego hitting his head on a pillar after being sucker-punched. Nine days later, he was pronounced clinically dead and taken off of life support.



Moreno Valley school district spokeswoman Anahi Velasco, through a statement, to KLTA, denied the district did any wrongdoing. "The two boys who attacked and killed Diego are responsible for this death," Velasco wrote in an email to the station. "Bullying in schools is a national issue. This issue constitutes a shared responsibility amongst parents, students, school district personnel, community leaders and law enforcement," she said. 



"Together, we need to send a resounding message these behaviors will not be tolerated in our schools. Keeping kids safe in schools is a high priority at MVUSD.” A vigil was held for Diego, during which several other students and their families shared similar complaints about bullying and accused the district of not taking appropriate action. Bullying is still an issue in schools and it needs to be tackled swiftly and efficiently before more lives are lost.  




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