Accused Teen Bullies Identities Revealed At Press Conference
The heartbroken mom whose 12-year-old daughter was allegedly bullied to death is speaking out.
Rebecca Sedwick jumped to her death from the the top of an abandoned concrete plant outside Tampa, Florida.
Her family just moved to a new home to escape the painful memories of their old house, and all her mother, Tricia has left is a shelf filled with mementos that has become a shrine.
Tricia pointed out one photo, saying, "This is her when she was five or six."
Rebecca would have been 13 on Saturday and her family plans a poignant graveside birthday party.
Meanwhile, controversy has broken out.
Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd held up mugshots at a press conference of the 12 and 14-year-old girls accused of bullying Rebecca. Juveniles are not normally identified.
"We have these wonderful photographs of our two new felons," said Judd.
CBS, NBC and ABC chose to not to identify them. Fox News did.
The sheriff is earning widespread praise for making the arrests after he saw a heartless Facebook post about Rebecca's suicide.
Sheriff Judd said, "The reason why we made these arrests quicker than we wanted to is because of this post: 'Yes I bullied Rebecca and she killed herself but I don't give a [blank]' and you can fill in the last word yourself.' "
The 14-year-old girl denies any wrongdoing and her parents claimed on Good Morning America that her computer must have been hacked.
ABC News asked, "Had you ever thought of her as a bully? Had you been told she was a bully by the school?"
"Never once! Never once," said the parents.
Cyber bullying expert Parry Aftab told us what you can do to stop bullying.
"We need to teach our young people to stop, block, and tell if something disturbs them online, or if they're cyber-bullied. Stop and don't answer back. Block the person or message, and tell a trusted adult."
The sheriff says he hopes parents across America learn from this tragedy.
"Watch what your children do online! Pay attention," said Sheriff Judd.