Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education

Front Page



UK Politics







Talking Point
On Air
Low Graphics

Monday, August 10, 1998 Published at 18:41 GMT 19:41 UK


Tormented teenager killer herself

Kelly was was a particularly vulnerable girl

A tormented and bullied 13-year-old killed herself because she was harassed at school, in the street and also felt victimised at home, an inquest has heard.

Coroner Peter Ashworth recorded a verdict of suicide after hearing how Kelly Yeomans was teased at school about being overweight and unfashionable.

Mr Ashworth read out a note which Kelly had written some time before she took a fatal drugs overdose.

The teenager said she was sick of being asked to do jobs for her mother, Julie, and sister Sarah, 16.

Vulnerable girl

Eggs and margarine were thrown at her home in Allenton, Derby, and pornographic pictures were pushed through the letterbox.

Mr Ashworth described Kelly as a particularly vulnerable girl who would have been deeply upset by the verbal abuse she suffered.

[ image: Kelly's home: Eggs were thrown at the door]
Kelly's home: Eggs were thrown at the door
He said: "On the spur of the moment she decided she had had enough and decided to take her life."

He urged people to learn a lesson from the tragedy and treat each other with "kindness and respect".

Mr Ashworth said: "If anything good can come out of this, it may be that the publicity can teach people how horrible youngsters and sometimes adults can be to each other."

The inquest was told how Kelly even felt victimised at home.

Kelly died after taking 13 times the minimum lethal dosage of the drug Coproxymoy, which her mother used for a knee complaint.

The youngster, who was found dead by her father Ivan in her bedroom in September last year, had taken 40 of the pills.

Mrs Yeomans told the inquest her daughter was often teased at school about being overweight and once had her new glasses smashed by bullies.

Her new trainers were thrown in a bin along with her new school bag.

She would regularly have bruises on her back where she had been stabbed with a pencil.

Mrs Yeomans said she had been to Merrill College up to 30 times to complain about bullying but nothing was done.

She said a few days before Kelly killed herself, she had spoken about taking an overdose.

Mrs Yeomans told the inquest: "She said, `It's nothing to do with you daddy, nothing to do with you mummy, and nothing to do with you Sarah. I've had enough and I'm going to take an overdose'."

Upset by teasing

Mr Yeoman said there was a spate of attacks on the family home with eggs in the days running up to his daughter's death.

He said: "They teased her about being fat and that really upset her."

One of Kelly's tormentors told the inquest she would be called a "tramp", "bastard" and "fatty" because she was overweight and unfashionable.

The boy said: "She was just odd, I suppose. She wore clothes that were old-fashioned and she was an easy target."

Former neighbour Wendy Butler said she saw Kelly being treated "like a little slave" by her mother at her house.

Mrs Yeoman said Kelly may have felt picked on, but the family were only trying to help her.

Michael Shaw, principal at Merrill College, said there was a strict bullying policy at the school and pupils had been spoken to about harassing Kelly.

Following Kelly's death, five youths were given attendance centre orders after admitting harassment charges.

Advanced options | Search tips

Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage |

UK Contents

Northern Ireland
In this section

Next steps for peace

Blairs' surprise over baby

Bowled over by Lord's

Beef row 'compromise' under fire

Hamilton 'would sell mother'

Industry misses new trains target

From Sport
Quins fightback shocks Cardiff

From Business
Vodafone takeover battle heats up

IRA ceasefire challenge rejected

Thousands celebrate Asian culture

From Sport
Christie could get two-year ban

From Entertainment
Colleagues remember Compo

Mother pleads for baby's return

Toys withdrawn in E.coli health scare

From Health
Nurses role set to expand

Israeli PM's plane in accident

More lottery cash for grassroots

Pro-lifers plan shock launch

Double killer gets life

From Health
Cold 'cure' comes one step closer

From UK Politics
Straw on trial over jury reform

Tatchell calls for rights probe into Mugabe

Ex-spy stays out in the cold

From UK Politics
Blair warns Livingstone

From Health
Smear equipment `misses cancers'

From Entertainment
Boyzone star gets in Christmas spirit

Fake bubbly warning

Murder jury hears dead girl's diary

From UK Politics
Germ warfare fiasco revealed

Blair babe triggers tabloid frenzy

Tourists shot by mistake

A new look for News Online