Who Is Mya Vizcarrondo-Rios? New Details On The Bronx Girl And Victim Of Bullying Who Killed Herself Hours After Being Sexually Assaulted

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Who Is Mya Vizcarrondo-Rios? New Details On The Bronx Girl And Victim Of Bullying Who Killed Herself Hours After Being Sexually Assaulted

Hers was a tragic life that was over before it even began. But hers is a story that is worth telling in the hopes that someone else may be saved from a similar fate.

There’s a lawsuit currently pending in Bronx Supreme Court, filed by Mya Vizcarrondo-Rios’ family, that suggests that faculty and staff at Harry Truman High School knew that she was being bullied daily. The lawsuit also alleges that Mya’s sexual assault also happened on the school grounds, and the faculty and staff knew about it. Despite these disturbing details, neither the faculty nor the staff did anything to intervene and help Mya, hence the reason for this lawsuit.

Here’s what we know about Mya Vizcarrondo-Rios and the tragic story behind her death.

Who is Mya Vizcarrondo-Rios?

1. Her parents say she was bullied daily

According to paperwork featured in the New York Daily News, Mya Vizcarrondo-Rios’ mother and father — who are bringing the lawsuit on behalf of their daughter in the Bronx Supreme Court — claim that Mya’s schoolmates bullied her daily. Through their attorney, they also allege that the school knew she was being bullied, and they did nothing to stop it or try to counsel Mya to handle it better. “I asked what was going on. She said she was having trouble, but she didn’t tell me she was being bullied. She didn’t tell me about this. I found out after she passed. The school never told me about the cutting (classes),” said Heriberto Rios, Mya’s father.

John Scola, the attorney for the Vizcarrondo-Rios family, agrees with his client. “The tragic circumstances surrounding my client's death could have been prevented. We hope that this case will cause the New York City Department of Education to reevaluate their policies and properly train their employees on issues related to bullying so that no student feels so hopeless they believe suicide is the answer,” he said, according to the outlet.

Mya Vizcarrondo-Rios's family said she was bullied daily and her school did nothing about it.

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2. Mya Vizcarrondo-Rios tried to tell her guidance counselor about the bullying

According to ABC News, Mya Vizcarrondo-Rios tried to tell her guidance counselor that she was being bullied. The outlet further goes on to note that Keri Alfano, who was the principal of Mya’s school, was informed about the meeting. However, Mya’s parents say that they were never informed of the meeting. What’s more, they said that they were very dismissive of Mya’s needs. “Mya met with her guidance counselor and Alfano on separate occasions to talk about the bullying, according to the lawsuit, which says that the guidance counselor once told Mya she would investigate but that she never did. The meeting with Alfano, meanwhile, ended with Mya being “ignored and simply sent back to class without any intervention by the school,” according to the lawsuit, reports the outlet.

Mya Vizcarrondo-Rios's death is a tragedy. 

3. On the day before she died, Mya was forced to perform sex acts on two separate students

According to BET.com, on February 27, 2018, Mya Vizcarrondo-Rios tried to tell one of her friends that she was “having problems,” and that she was allegedly forced to perform sex acts on two separate students. Her pleas for help, however, went ignored. “Rios later learned in the moments before she died by suicide that Mya was sexually assaulted while she and other students were left unsupervised in the auditorium for a performance. Mya was forced to perform oral sex on two boys and afterward, she was teased by other students,” reports the outlet.

Mya Vizcarrondo-Rios's family is suing the city of New York.

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4. Mya Vizcarrondo-Rios’ parents are suing the city for neglect

According to the court documents filed in Bronx Supreme Court (via EP Mundo), Mya’s parents are alleging that the city neglected her. And, as a result of their neglect, their daughter is dead.

If you, or someone you know, is considering suicide, we would like to recommend Lifeline Chat. Lifeline Chat is a service of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, connecting individuals with counselors for emotional support and other services via web chat. All chat centers in the Lifeline network are accredited by CONTACT USA. Lifeline Chat is available 24/7 across the U.S.

Our thoughts are with Mya Vizcarrondo-Rios and her family during this difficult time. 

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Bernadette Giacomazzo is an editor, writer, and photographer whose work has appeared in People, Teen Vogue, Us Weekly, The Source, XXL, HipHopDX, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Post, and more. She is also the author of The Uprising series. Find her online at www.bernadettegiacomazzo.com and www.longlivetheuprising.com.