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Utah school district sued over student’s suicide

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) – A Utah couple has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the North Sanpete School District, claiming its failure to protect their son from years of bullying, hazing and false sex assault allegations led to his suicide.

The federal court lawsuit filed Jan. 17 on behalf of Bradd and Edna Hancock seeks unspecified financial damages.

Court papers say the Hancock’s son, identified as J.H., committed suicide Jan. 21, 2010.

The lawsuit contends district officials knew J.H. was the target of physical and emotional abuse from students and others for more than five years but failed to act to protect him.

Named as defendants in the lawsuit are the district, its board and the county sheriff’s office.

Superintendent Leslie Keisel referred a request for comment to state risk managers.

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