(thepostmillennial)An 11-year-old boy tragically killed himself during online classes on Wednesday in California. His mic and camera were off, teachers and fellow students did not notice that he was gone.
The San Joaquin County Sheriff’s Office confirm the boy was in his Zoom class with his microphone and camera turned off when he took his own life. His sister, who was distance learning in another room, heard a gunshot. She went into the other room to find her brother had committed suicide and alerted her classroom to what had happened. She then rushed to a neighbor who called 911.
The sheriff’s office said deputies responded to Sterling Street in the Woodbridge community of Sacramento just after 11 am to investigate a reported shooting. At the scene, a young boy with a head injury was found.
The boy was rushed to a nearby hospital with his parents by his side. The boy was rushed to a hospital, however, on Wednesday afternoon, the sheriff’s office announced on Facebook the boy had died. According to authorities the gun was registered to an adult in the home.
“This is a traumatic situation for anyone. Even if you don’t have kids, this hits everyone,” said San Joaquin County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Sandra Mendez.
Woodbridge Elementary School where the student was enrolled is a part of Lodi Unified School District, which started the 2020-21 school year on Aug. 3, 2020, with all students in distance learning classrooms.
Paul Warren, Lodi Unified School District student support director, told News 19 that the district has seen an increasing number of anxious and depressed students, as the students’ routines have been interrupted and they aren’t able to socialize amid the pandemic.
Tara Niendam, a child psychologist for UC Davis, told News 19 that “they have also seen an increase in suicidal ideations in children, and that the kids are feeling the same stress adults are feeling during the pandemic.” She said distance learning could be isolating for children who thrive on structure and social interactions.
“All they need is one meaningful adult to talk to,” Niendam said. “That needs to maybe be a teacher or a coach, and (children) don’t have that person now.”
In August, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showed 22.5 percent of American adults between the ages of 18 and 24 years old admitted to having considered suicide within the last 30 days because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Among those ages 25 to 44, 16 percent said they have thought about taking their lives.
“The message has been disseminated that this is some terrible infection that’s a killer, that everybody is at risk of dying,” Dr. Daniel Wohlgelernter, a cardiologist, told CBN News. “We know that 99.7 percent of people that get infected with COVID survive.”
If you or someone you know is experiencing signs of depression or adverse mental health, check out these online mental health resources. You can also call the National Suicide Prevention hotline anytime, 24/7, at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or your local county mental health crisis phone line. Additional resources are available on the National Suicide Prevention website.