Dec 31, 2008

It appears that the saga of Jena Six continues to get sadder and sadder. I just pray this young man gets the help he need.

A Louisiana teenager whose 2006 arrest in the racially charged "Jena 6" assault case drew thousands of protesters tried to commit suicide days after a separate arrest last week, a police report says.

Mychal Bell, who was arrested last week after allegedly stealing clothes worth $370 from a department store, told investigators he shot himself Monday evening "because he was tired of all the media attention," the report says.

The high school senior's mother and his grandmother also told an investigator that he'd indicated "he did not feel like he could live anymore" because of media coverage of the shoplifting allegations, according to the report.

Earlier, Bell's attorney, Carol Powell-Lexing, told CNN that Bell's family told her he'd accidentally shot himself while cleaning a gun.

According to the police report, however, an officer responded to a 911 call from his grandmother's Monroe, Louisiana, home, where Bell lives. The grandmother, Rosie Simmons, told the officer that she had hidden the gun after the shooting "for Mychal's safety so he did not try to shot [sic] himself again," according to the report.

Bell, 18, suffered a wound to the upper right chest, the report says. Powell-Lexing told CNN that Bell had surgery Monday night, and Monroe police Sgt. Cassandra Wooten said the wound was not life-threatening.

Bell was being treated Tuesday at a hospital in Shreveport, Louisiana.


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