• Australian cyberbully sentenced for best friend’s suicide

    Date: 04.21.10 | by Judge Tom.

    In 2009, Shane Gerada and Allem Halkic were friends. Then, when they had a falling out, Shane sent Allem threatening text messages. He said he wanted to appear tough and that he acted out of revenge. His messages included:

    “Ur all mouth and no action, wait till I get my hands on u, and I’m telling u now ill put you in hospital;”

    “Don’t be surprised if u get hit sum time soon. You f…ked with the wrong person.;” and  ”its payback for him.”

    Allem Halkic

    On February 5, 2009, Allem messaged Shane as follows:  “Shane man just listen to me I need your help…you might not give a f*** about me or whatever but just be a man and help me out.” Several hours later, Allem jumped off Melbourne’s West Gate Bridge in Australia and died.

    Shane was convicted of stalking for sending threatening text and online messages. In April, 2010, he was sentenced to 18 months probation and 200 hours of community work.

    Update: In May, 2011, the Victims of Crime Assistance Tribunal in Australia determined that Allem’s death was the direct result of an act of violence. His parents, Ali and Dina Halkic, now speak to students about the dangers of cyberbullying and may now seek compensation for his death. See this video of Allem’s room at home and statement from his parents:  http://media.smh.com.au/news/national-news/courts-cyberbully-landmark-decision-2395607.html

    For immediate help in Australia if you’re thinking about suicide, call 13 11 14 or go online for assistance at www.lifeline.org.au

    Judge Tom

    This post was written by Judge Tom. Judge Tom is the founder and moderator of AsktheJudge.info. He is a retired juvenile judge and spent 23 years on the bench. He has written several books for lawyers and judges as well as teens and parents including the recently published 'Teen Cyberbullying Investigated' (Free Spirit Publishing). When he's not answering teens' questions, Judge Tom can be found hiking, traveling and reading.

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