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Suicide of the boy who was bullied for being too clever; GRIEVING MUM: THUGS DROVE MY SON TO DEATH.

Byline: BRIAN ROBERTS

A DISTRAUGHT mum told last night how her bright young son killed himself because of bullies.

Thomas Thompson, 11, suffered weeks of torment at the hands of school thugs before taking an overdose of painkillers.

Mother Sandra claims he was targeted because he was clever and loved schoolwork rather than sport.

On the day of his death he skipped classes after being forced off the school bus by a gang.

Thomas was found slumped on his bedroom floor by Sandra and died on the way to hospital.

The 33-year-old shop worker said: "These bullies killed my son. He told me how they got at him every day, trying to strangle him with his tie, poking him, prodding him. It was like torture.

"They'd call him names like Gay Boy and Fatso.

"He didn't really fit in with other boys his age. He was extremely clever, loved reading and doing his schoolwork.

"He was well-spoken and loved different music to his peers. They'd be listening to rap and pop. He loved bands from the 70s and 80s. His favourite was Human League.

"He didn't like football. So they teased and tormented him relentlessly, just because he was a bit different.

"I have no words to describe the people who persecuted and taunted Thomas. I hate them. My life is so empty now."

Tearful Sandra told how she came home to find Thomas collapsed.He had swallowed 12 tablets. She said: "I went to his room to check he was OK after I had a call from school to say he hadn't turned up.

"I saw an empty packet of pills and his lips were blue. I ran screaming for my partner Geoff and called an ambulance. We tried to resuscitate him but could do nothing to help. No mother should have to see their baby like that. I don't think he wanted to kill himself. It was a cry for help that went wrong."

Thomas's ordeal began at Riverside primary school in Merseyside. He thought it would stop when he moved to Wallasey High.

But some of his tormentors went there too.

Sandra said: "The taunts got worse. On the day he died he'd been forced off the school bus. I think that tipped him over the edge."

Sandra said she informed the school about her son's torment but Thomas, who wanted to be a scientist when he grew up, told her and the teachers it had stopped.

Sandra said: "He just hid it from us. He thought if we made a fuss it would get worse. So he bottled it up."

Wallasey head Martin Pope said: "The whole school is shocked and saddened by Thomas's death. We had no knowledge he was being bullied."

Last month, 16-year-old Karl Peart killed himself after being plagued by bullies at Hirst High School in Ashington, Northumberland.

Two weeks later Gemma Dimmick, 15 - a pupil at the same school - took a fatal overdose. She had allegedly been tormented by thugs.

CAPTION(S):

VICTIM: Young Thomas wanted to be a scientist; DEVASTATED: Sandra with Geoff last night
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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Jul 4, 2003
Words:515
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