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Lawyer says students passed around photos of sexual assault

April 12, 2013|By Joseph Serna
  • Audrie Pott in an undated photograph provided by her family.
Audrie Pott in an undated photograph provided by her family. (AP Photo / Family photo )

Students shared photos of a girl being sexually assaulted in the days before the girl committed suicide, a lawyer representing the family said.

Robert Allard, an attorney representing the family of 15-year-old Audrie Pott, told the San Jose Mercury News that Audrie posted on her Facebook page that her life was "ruined" and that she was enduring the "worst day ever" shortly before she hanged herself last fall in Saratoga in Northern California.

Authorities said they investigated for months before arresting three teenage boys Thursday in the alleged sexual assault of the high school sophomore last fall.

Eight days after the incident, Audrie -- a student at Saratoga High School in Santa Clara County -- took her own life, authorities said.

Santa Clara County Sheriff's Lt. Jose Cardoza told the Associated Press on Thursday night that investigators on the high school campus developed information for several months that led to the arrests.

He also said authorities are looking into the circumstances surrounding her suicide.

The boys, all 16, were taken into custody at two high schools and booked into juvenile hall, authorites told Northern California media organizations.

The family created a foundation in Audrie's memory to support youths by awarding scholarships. 

"She was compassionate about life, her friends, her family and would never do anything to harm anyone. She was in the process of developing the ability to cope with the cruelty of this world but had not quite figured it all out," a statement on the foundation's website says. "It would have been her wish that we could all learn from her unfortunate and tragic passing that somehow through the lessons learned that this tragedy could provide an impetus for change."

Two of the boys attend Saratoga High School; the other attends Christopher High School in Gilroy. Audrie was a sophomore at Saratoga High. Saratoga is about 45 miles south of San Francisco.


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