Parents worried about anonymous bully on Twitter targeting Bear

Parents worried about anonymous bully on Twitter targeting Bearden HS students

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A Twitter account is targeting high school students and parents want it to stop. A Twitter account is targeting high school students and parents want it to stop.
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By LAURA HALM
6 News Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - Malicious, hurtful messages are being tweeted by an account called "Knoxville Gossip Girl."

A concerned viewer recently reached out to us, after her teenage daughter is one of many mentioned in tweets form the account. 

Parents say the tweets seem to be targeting Bearden High School students, both boys and girls. School officials learned about this account earlier in the week and they've been letting parents know about this issue.

As of right now, everyone is working to stop this anonymous bully.

The account has posted only 29 tweets so far, but the content of Knoxville Gossip Girl's tweets is horrifying kids and their parents.

"I'm thinking this is a spineless person. That they don't want to put their name on it but they want to say these horrible untruths about these young students and they can't defend themselves," said concerned mom Deanna Ward.

Tweets we found say "Spotted: X at Planned Parenthood. I thought you and X broke up?" Or another tweet on January 12th "X you don't like us because you've got too much to hide."

Most of Knoxville Gossip Girl's tweets aren't safe to air on TV or post on our website.

Ward's 16-year-old daughter was the recent target and said her daughter hasn't been able to sleep or eat and she's been harassed at school.

Now, Ward is policing the account daily, saying other Bearden students are also being harassed. She has also taken Knoxville Gossip Girl's not-so-secret account to school officials.

"The problem we have here is that it's almost impossible to know or establish who actually has that site up. It may or may not be a student at Bearden. It may or may not be a student in Knox County Schools," said Bearden Principal Dr. John Bartlett.

If it is a fellow student at Bearden High School behind this Twitter account, officials say they'll follow the system's policy on cyber bullying.

In this online playground, Ward feels like there's only so much she can do to protect her daughter. That's why she says she's alerted Knoxville Police.

"We're not going to stop until this person is found or these people or group or whoever it is," she said.

Twitter's website claims that, in some cases, you can report an abusive user to Twitter, along with the content.

According to Knox County Schools' policy on cyber bullying, consequences can range from behavioral interventions, up to suspension or expulsion.

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