"We owe it to Gabe:" Hamilton Co. coroner to reopen case of 8-year-old suicide victim
CINCINNATI (WKRC) – The Hamilton County Coroner says she is reopening the investigation into the suicide of an 8-year-old Carson Elementary student, because of what security video shows.
“He smiled everyday… no one knew what was going on,” said Casey Claypool, a mother of three students who attend Carson Elementary.
But some of what was going on in Gabe Taye's life two days before the 8-year old killed himself is reportedly on video.
No charges have been filed against a student who is seen pushing Gabe to the bathroom floor where his mother's attorney says he lay unconscious for seven and a half minutes, but all that could change.
The bullying happened two days before 8-year-old Gabe killed himself. A detective who reviewed security video in the restroom told Cincinnati Public that a student, who he refers to as “P.A.” or “Primary Agitator” punched another boy in the stomach. Then Gabe walks into the restroom.
Gabe appears to shake the P.A.'s hand, but the P.A. appears to yank Gabe’s arm and pull him to the ground where he laid motionless for seven and a half minutes as the P.A. celebrates and other students step over Gabe, pointing, nudging and kicking him.
"Where were they for seven and a half minutes that that was able to start take place and finish?” asked Claypool.
Casey Claypool has three children at Carson Elementary. Gabe was her son's friend.
She believes bullying is embedded in the environment. She says her daughter was told not to use that word.
"Do not use the word ‘bullying,’ we say ‘picked on’ do not say ‘bullying…’ you call it what it is, my daughter was trying to stick up for somebody,” said Claypool.
In a statement, Cincinnati Public Schools said while they are concerned about the lack of adult supervision at the scene, a nurse checked Gabe then called his mother.
But Gabe’s family attorney says Gabe's mother was never told what happened.
She took him to the hospital after he kept throwing up and then the hospital sent him home.
Gabe stayed home the next day, but went back the day after that.
When he got home from that day, he killed himself.
That has Jessica Gibson talking to her 5-year-old about suicide.
"It’s tough talking to 5-year-old about someone she saw after school… him not being there and why he killed himself,” said Gibson.
Hamilton County Coroner Lakshmi Sammarco says she wants to see the video.
If the violence contributed to Gabe's death, she may amend the death certificate, and send the case to the prosecutors' office.
A detective told the school what he saw on the video could rise to a crime, but because the students were so young, it was thought the school should handle it.
Dr. Sammarco says she doesn't care how young they are. She's reopening the case.
"It's going to happen again if nothing is done,” said Dr. Sammarco.
Dr. Sammarco says she's reopening the death investigation because she owes it to Gabe.
Cincinnati Public did not answer Local 12’s question about what happened to the student who pushed Gabe down.
In the statement made on Thursday, they did say the video evidence does not support any suggestion other students were beating Gabe.
When the videotape is released, Local 12 will update this story with those details.