"Game" Claims Lives of Three Middle Schoolers

The teens have died of what authorities say are self inflicted injuries, asphyxiated with belts around their necks, in a game authorities call "black out."

Children attempting to enhance sexual self-gratification end up killing themselves. Since November, three male middle school students at Branford School have all died at their homes from what authorities say are self inflicted injuries.

It's a situation that has rocked this town in south Suwannee County.

Walter Boatright, Jr., School Superintendent, says, "We are devastated. We have brought in experts; we are just very upset and want to get to the bottom of this and to determine what the reason is."

School administrators say it became apparent that this was not an isolated problem once the third death occurred last week in a similar manner as the first two deaths. That's why the school system has called in expert psychologist from south Florida to help this community to deal with these deaths.

Frank Zenere, a school psychologist, says, "There are no simple answers. Quite frankly, we may never know exactly what was going on in the mind of the children."

While no one may be able to explain why, both psychologists and school officials say the work of healing and educating must begin.

Boatright adds, "We've got two situations here. We're looking at a short term solution and we're looking at a long term solution, but we've got to identify the problem and address it short term."


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