A Florida girl killed herself after a naked video of her in the shower was taken without her permission and posted on Snapchat, her family says.
Tovonna Holton, a freshman at Wiregrass Ranch High School in Wesley Chapel, took her own life just hours after the video circulated on the app, WFLA reports.
The 15-year-old had taken a gun from her mother’s purse and shot herself in the bathroom of her home on Sunday.
Her mother, Levon Holton-Teamer, said that she had sent her daughter to clean her room that afternoon and a little while later, went looking for her.
‘I go into the bathroom, I couldn’t get into bathroom,’ she told WFLA.
She broke down as she revealed how she desperately tried to save her daughter’s life after finding her on the bathroom floor in a pool of blood.
‘The bathroom light was off so I tried to get in and I looked down and I saw the puddle of blood. I tried to apply the pressure, the pressure to her head,’ she said. ‘I tried to save her.’
She remembers that hours before her daughter was found dead, she had spoken about a nude picture her friends had taken of her without permission – and told her mother that she ‘owed them.’
‘I said, ‘What do you mean you owe them?’ I couldn’t understand what was wrong,’ Holton-Teamer told the station.
Tovonna’s aunt, Angel Scott, later took to Facebook and found out that it was actually a video of her niece naked in the shower that had circulated online.
She asked if anyone knew anything about her niece’s death to get in touch.
‘The kids started inboxing me,’ she said. ‘Everybody was out there talking about her and calling her names and they said it went up on social media, Snapchat.’
The Pasco County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the allegations of cyber bullying after the the Pasco County School District became aware of the complaints.
Pasco Sheriff’s spokesman Eddie Daniels told the Tampa Bay Times that investigators are aware of allegations regarding the nude video and ‘continue to investigate all angles.’
Holton's mother (pictured) broke down as she revealed how she desperately tried to save her daughter’s life after finding her on the bathroom floor in a pool of blood.
Meanwhile, Holton’s family are calling for justice and her picture is being shared on social media with ‘#stopbullying.’
A Facebook post by a friend of Holton’s has been shared almost 5,000 times.
Crystal Belle wrote: ‘She took her own life after being filmed nude in the shower by peer students, who then shared and shamed her on Snapchat.
‘My prayers go out to the family of this beautiful young woman. I hope that all schools and parents begin to attack the beast of bullying and social media.’
Images and videos that are shared via Snapchat are typically deleted after they are viewed or can be viewed repeatedly for up to 24 hours by a user’s followers depending on how they choose to share the media.
However, users are able to take screenshots of snaps which are then saved on their phones.
If you need to speak to a counselor, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Hotline by calling 1-800-273-8255.