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Massachusetts Teens Charged In Online Racist Bullying

Six Massachusetts students have been charged in "hateful, racist online" Snapchat bullying incidents, USA Today reports. Hampden District Attorney Anthony Gulluni said his office is pursuing criminal charges against six minors from Southwick for the February incidents that included "facilitating and participating in a hateful, racist online chat that included heinous language, threats, and a mock slave auction." “Hatred and racism have no place in this community. And where this behavior becomes criminal, I will ensure that we act, and act with swift resolve, as we did here, to uncover it and bring it to the light of justice. There is no question that the alleged behavior of these six juveniles is vile, cruel, and contemptible," Gulluni said.

Between the night of February 8 and the morning of February 9, a group of 8th-grade students created a Snapchat group chat where several shared racist and hateful comments, "including notions of violence toward people of color, racial slurs, derogatory pictures and videos, and a mock slave auction directed at two particular juveniles." The group chat and some of the comments discussed were reported to school authorities. Several students were suspended "as an emergency removal" after a review by school personnel the following Monday. Several students were formally suspended later that week. Gulluni said he met with the victims and their families. All 6 are charged with threatening to commit a crime, two are charged with interference with civil rights, and one of those two was also charged with witness interference.


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