St Kentigern's Academy death: Family of teenager who died say boy was "being bullied" at school
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The family of a teenage boy who died following an incident at St Kentigern’s Academy in West Lothian have said they believe was being bullied – and added that he had been involved in another incident the day before his death.
The 14-year-old, who has been named locally as Hamdan Aslam, died in hospital on Tuesday afternoon, a short time after emergency services were called to singer Lewis Capaldi’s old school. The school said police were called to deal with an “isolated incident” but Hamdan’s family have said his death was part of an ongoing issue at the academy.
His heartbroken cousin Sana Khaliq said the youngster had lost his life “during break time” and “suffered a horrible death whilst many stood around and watched”. She also denied rumours which had been circulating on social media that Hamdan died after taking part in a Tik Tok trend.
Speaking on Tuesday, she said: "I’m sorry but wherever this [rumour] has come from needs checked as an incident occurred with him yesterday around a fight which we believe has continued to today resulting in the loss of life.”
Another relative, Zain Mohammed, echoed the family's concerns and said Hamdan had been "put in a chokehold” by “a boy who’s been bullying him”. He added: “The worst thing about it is that it’s being passed off as a game they were playing called tap out. This wasn’t the case. He was being singled out and bullied for being different.”
The school's headteacher Andrew Sharkey released a statement earlier today, in which he said everyone at the school was "devastated" by the teenager’s death. He said: “Our thoughts and prayers are with their family and friends and we extend our deepest condolences and offers of support.
“We have set up ongoing emotional support and signposting for students and staff affected by this tragic news. We would like to respect the family's privacy at this incredibly painful time. We are assisting the relevant authorities with their investigation to establish the facts and we will not be making any further comment at this time.”
A Police Scotland spokesman said: “Inquiries are ongoing to establish the full circumstances of the death.”