It seems the parents of a Texas high school student are fed up with their daughter being cyberbullied, and they’re doing something about it through the legal system.
Reymundo Esquivel and Shellie Tingle-Esquivel are suing several teenage boys for including their daughter in an Instagram post entitled “2014 Klein Hoes.” They’re also suing the teens’ parents for negligence.
According to the Esquivels, their daughter was the victim of online sexual harassment due to the Instagram post, which broke her down emotionally.
“She was actually crying,” said Shelline Tingle-Esquivel. “She had her cell phone with Instagram, saying, ‘I can’t believe someone has done this to me.’ It’s changed her life tremendously.”
And the offensive Instagram post–which has since been taken down–included topless photos of many female students attending Klein High School, which could bring child- pornography charges to those involved.
Tej Paranjpe, the Esquivel’s lawyer, said going after the teenage boys and their parents is about sending a message, and it will hopefully put a stop to this type of behavior once and for all. “We’re being super aggressive about it,” he said. “Because this behavior really needs to stop.”
According to a recent study, a lot of parents feel the same way, and they’re taking legal action to stop cyberbullying, instead of going through the school. In fact, 36 percent of parents said they would go to the police if they discovered their child was getting harassed online, and those percentages continue to increase.
Jason Thomas, of Thomson Reuters, the company behind the study, said a lot of parents are just now understanding what cyberbullying really is, and since many of them are just now recognizing how harmful it can be, they’re now reacting in a major way.
“Though cyberbullying is a challenging issue for students, parents, school officials and law enforcement, these statistics suggest that people want to work together to understand the issue, protect kids from cyberbullying, and help kids understand the serious consequences of participating in cyberbullying,” he said.
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