Mailbag: Judith Scruggs Guilty?

Mom Talks About 12-Year-Old Son's Suicide

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Suicide Of A 12-Year-Old
Wednesday, Oct. 29, at 8 p.m. ET/PT

Judith Scruggs has already been punished. There is no need to lock her up.
Why doesn't someone create the necessary process to stop the bullies, and teach school faculty how to better identify these problems? The school administrators and students must also take some responsibility for the Daniel's death. Help his mother understand what happened -- don't lock her up in prison.
-- Linda Robertson

Sounds like Meriden, Conn., has a good share of adult bullies in addition to the usual child bullies at school. The adults have picked up where the kids have left off by going after Daniel's mother and trying to beat her down, too.
-- Dorothy G.

I am absolutely flabbergasted at how this happened. This beautiful 12-year-old boy was so neglected -- mentally, physically, in every aspect. I can not fathom how a jury could not find this mother guilty of every charge, and then some.

My husband and I have been fighting similar circumstances with his son for more than a year now. We had to get a court order to get educational help. We have fought a mother just like this one who lost her child, and can get nowhere.

I cannot believe that it is easier for someone to go to jail for innocently writing a bad check than neglecting their own children.

I am shocked at all of this and can not understand how the judges and attorneys can sleep at night. What if this was their child? Would they have insisted on bathing? Counseling? How can you work at your child's school and not know what's going on? This mother should serve prison time, without a doubt. Then maybe she'll know the fear that child lived in.
-- Veronica Eaton

I think this story of the 12-year-old's suicide is another example of fathers getting off the hook. Regardless of whether anyone thinks this woman is a good mother or a bad mother, she is head and shoulders above the father that abandoned them. She is working two jobs to keep the family going. Why don't the cops go after the father? He, like many others, has sent the message that taking responsbility is not necessary.
-- Beth Logan

I find it embarrassing that the U.S. judicial system would convict a mother for the death of her child, who was sleeping with knives. The knives were most probably there for the protection he felt he needed. To be bullied at school, and knowing teachers who let it go on, puts a child in a situation where he feels he has to handle it himself.

Why was not any punishment dealt to the school? Is the mother the only one at fault here? I think not! I, too, was bullied at school as a young child, and it is not a position anyone wants to find themselves in. I slept under the covers during this time, and would have welcomed a weapon.

I'm thankful that after a year or so, I chose to stop it any way I could. Fortunately, it didn't take a weapon -- just a hard solid fist and a pair of boots. I feel the school has a great deal of responsibility in the case, and apparently they have been let off the hook. If my child were in this school I would move them.
-- Wendell Duke

It is appalling to me that this mother should be facing up to 10 years in prison. If she was charged and found guilty, everyone else who did not help this child should also be charged and found guilty.

How nice and easy it is for the police and the school to wash their hands of this situation. Where was the school when this was going on day after day?

It took a tortured 12-year-old to take his life for the school, the police and the social system to take any type of action. The public is told of the continuing problem with bullying and yet those teachers did nothing for Daniel. Now, there is a law -- too little too late. The police and the teachers of his school should all be ashamed.
-- Pam Ziarko

Finally a mother [and maybe a father] is negligent for their children's behavior. I am so sick and tired or schools, the government, and the Department of Family and Children being held liable and paying the price. When did the government take over the family's responsibilities? Parents should be held responsible -- or don't have the kids.
-- Lori Patton

It makes me sick that schools continually shrug off the responsibility of the children that they are overseeing for a good part of their lives. Yes, I agree the mother was negligent toward her son, but where was the faculty? Children need our protection and it is everyone's responsibility to see that they get it. I hope that the teachers and staff in that school have faith in the people their kids have around. It may happen to one of their own one day. Faculty, step up. Is it really worth your indifference and composure?
-- Sabrina Lagana

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