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Rehtaeh Parsons Update: Teens facing child porn charges in deadly cyberbulling case appear in court

Leah Parsons says her daughter Rehtaeh Parsons, pictured, killed herself after she never recovered from an alleged rape by four teenage boys that left her deeply depressed and bullied in her community. Facebook

Leah Parsons says her daughter Rehtaeh Parsons, pictured, killed herself after she never recovered from an alleged rape by four teenage boys that left her deeply depressed and bullied in her community.
Rehtaeh Parsons, whose parents say she committed suicide after she was raped by four teenage boys, and then cyberbullied about the alleged attack.
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(CBS/AP) HALIFAX, Nova Scotia - Two Canadian teenagers appeared in youth court Thursday on child pornography charges related to the case of 17-year-old Rehtaeh Parsons, whose parents say she committed suicide because of cyberbullying. 

PICTURES: Mom blames rape, bullying for teen's suicide

Parsons was taken off life support after a suicide attempt in April that her family says was prompted by months of bullying.

They say the 17-year-old was tormented after a digital photograph of her allegedly being sexually assaulted was distributed around her school.

After the alleged assault in November 2011, police conducted a year-long investigation and initially concluded there were no grounds to charge anyone. The two were charged after police reopened their investigation a week after the girl's death, and the arrests were just announced last week. Police said they had received new and credible information from someone who was willing to cooperate with their investigation.

One 18-year-old male faces two counts of distributing child pornography, while another 18-year-old male is charged with distributing and making child pornography. The next court action is set for Sept. 19. as the defense seeks additional disclosure of evidence.

The teens' names cannot be released because they were under 18 at the time of the alleged offenses.

Neither suspect showed any emotion during Thursday's court appearance.

Police have said there were no plans to file charges in connection with the alleged sexual assault.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has said he hoped Parsons' family would be given a degree of comfort by the arrests. 

The issue of bullying in Canada was thrust into the public eye last year after the suicide of teen Amanda Todd. She made a video about bullying and cyber-stalking that was seen around the world.

Complete coverage of Rehtaeh Parsons on Crimesider

  • Crimesider Staff

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