Kelly Yeomans

Kelly Yeomans

Kelly Yeomans (1984 – 28 September 1997) was an English school girl from the Allenton suburb near Derby. Her 1997 suicide, at the age of 13, became widespread news when the cause was traced to excessive bullying to which she had been subjected by other local children.

In evidence to court, Yeomans was described as a pleasant and friendly girl. However, she was reported to be the victim of repeated harassment and taunting, particularly about her weight. Her parents said that the incessant bullying had left Yeomans feeling miserable. Her mother asserted that she had gone to her daughter's school, Merrill College, Shelton Lock, thirty times to complain about the issue, but received no assistance. School officials, however, claimed they had received only one complaint.

Matters came to a head in September, 1997, when a group of youths reportedly gathered at Yeomans's home on several consecutive nights, on each occasion throwing food at the house and shouting taunts aimed at Yeomans. Her mother later said that the incident prompted Yeomans to tell her family, "It is nothing to do with you Daddy, nothing to do with you Mummy, and nothing to do with you Sarah [her sister] . I have had enough and I'm going to take an overdose."

The parents said they were worried and sought help for their daughter's obvious depression, but did not believe she would carry out her threat to take her own life. However, Yeomans was soon found dead in her bedroom after taking an overdose of painkillers.

After they admitted having done so, five youths between the ages of thirteen and seventeen were convicted of intentionally harassing Yeomans in the months leading up to her death. At their sentencing, they were given attendance centre orders. For a time, Yeomans's death put the issue of child bullies and their victims into the public spotlight.


*" [ Teenage bullies convicted] ", BBC News, February 10, 1998
*" [ What makes one child a bully and another a victim?] ", BBC News, March 3, 1998
*" [ Tormented teenager killed herself] ", BBC News, August 10, 1998
*" [ 'Anuguish' of bullied teenager] ", BBC News, August 10, 1998
*"Bullied to Death: Taunted London Teen Commits Suicide", Associated Press, October, 1998

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