Gardai play down bullying claims

Senior gardai have moved to dismiss rumours they are investigating claims the death of a 13-year-old schoolgirl last week may have stemmed from bullying.

Senior gardai have moved to dismiss rumours they are investigating claims the death of a 13-year-old schoolgirl last week may have stemmed from bullying.

Chloe Coleman, a first year student at Scoil Mhuire in Longford town died in tragic circumstances last week, causing widespread shock amongst her school friends and across the local community.

Reports over the weekend had indicated gardai were about to launch an investigation into claims the teenager may have been the victim of suspected bullying.

However, Superintendent Denis Shields dismissed those rumours, indicating gardai were treating the tragedy as nothing more than a "sudden death" at this stage.

"We are investigating the circumstances of a sudden death and that's it," he said earlier this week.

It's understood gardai are still gathering statements from members of the public, though Supt Shields was keen to insist there was nothing else to disclose as the investigation continues.

Meanwhile, friends have this week flooded social networking site Facebook with a series of heartfelt tributes to the bubbly teenager.

One friend posted on the aptly named homepage 'Rip Chloe Coleman': "babez am never ever guna 4get u:( ur were d bestest friend in the world to me".

Another friend who created the tribute page said the past ten days had left a massive void in her life. "(I have) never felt so empty in my whole life :( rest in peace my little angel."

The late Chloe Coleman was laid to rest inside the grounds of St Saran's Church Cemetery, Belmont, Co Offaly last Thursday (January 20).

The late Chloe Coleman