The medical examiner ruled the death of a teen a suicide

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OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The death of a nonbinary student the day after a fight inside an Oklahoma high school restroom has been ruled a suicide, the state medical examiner’s office said Wednesday.
A summary autopsy report was released more than a month after the death of 16-year-old Nex Benedict, a student at Owasso High School.
Family members said Benedict had been bullied at school and the teenager’s death in February drew concern from LGBTQ+ rights groups, as well as attention from Oklahoma’s governor and the White House.
“From the beginning of this investigation, Owasso Police observed many indications that this death was the result of suicide,” Owasso Police Department Lt. Nick Boatman said in a statement.
The report shows Benedict had toxic levels of two drugs in their system and died of an overdose.
A complete autopsy will be released in 10 days in accordance with state law, the medical examiner’s office said.
A lawyer for the Benedict family, Jacob Biby, told The Associated Press that he was working on a statement from the family Wednesday but declined to comment further.
Benedict claims that in the bathroom the students said “something like: why do they laugh like that,” referring to Benedict and their friends.
Family members have said Benedict was nonbinary, which means they didn’t identify as strictly male or female.
If you or someone you know needs help, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255.

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — According to the state medical examiner’s office, a nonbinary student’s death on the day following a brawl inside a high school restroom in Oklahoma was determined to be a suicide on Wednesday.

More than a month after Owasso High School student Nex Benedict, 16, passed away, a summary autopsy report was made public. Benedict’s death in February attracted the attention of LGBTQ+ rights groups, the governor of Oklahoma, and the White House. According to family members, Benedict had been the victim of bullying at school.

“Many signs pointed to a suicide cause for this death from the start of the investigation,” said Lieutenant of the Owasso Police Department. said in a statement Nick Boatman. Nevertheless, investigators did not want to verify that information until the Oklahoma Medical Examiners Office had presented the final results. “.

on February, during a 911 call. 8. Sue Benedict, who is the teen’s legal guardian and grandmother, had voiced concerns regarding a head wound. According to police footage that was made public last month, the teenager was awake and conscious following the altercation the day before when they reported the attack by the three girls that happened after the teen squirted them with water.

Benedict overdosed and died, according to the report, despite having toxic amounts of two drugs in his system. According to state law, the medical examiner’s office will release the results of a thorough autopsy in ten days.

Boatman declined to confirm if Benedict’s note was discovered by police at the scene.

Jacob Biby, an attorney representing the Benedict family, told The Associated Press that he was preparing a statement from the family on Wednesday but would not elaborate.

Benedict tells an officer in video taken at the hospital on the day of the fight that the girls had been making fun of them and their friends for their clothes. In reference to Benedict and his friends, Benedict says the students in the restroom said “something like: why do they laugh like that.”.

Benedict says to the officer while lying in bed in the hospital, “And so I went up there and I poured water on them, and then all three of them came at me.”.

The teen was given CPR by paramedics who arrived at the family’s home before they were rushed to the hospital, where they subsequently passed away.

Benedict’s family members have stated that he was nonbinary, meaning he did not strictly identify as male or female.

According to Brandon Dilawari, a case manager at Rainbow Youth Project USA, an Indiana-based organization that works to enhance the safety and wellness of LGBTQ+ youth, “bullying and harassment have a significant impact on students and, tragically, many of these youths believe that suicide is the only option for peace.”. By no means is this a singular occurrence. “.

As word of the teen’s passing spread, the organization noticed a sharp increase in calls from Oklahoma to its nationwide crisis hotline.

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