A student at a Nursing School in Athens stabbed three of her classmates on Thursday. The incident occurred during class, when the 22-year-old woman took a kitchen knife from her bag and attacked three other classmates, causing them minor injuries. The three victims, one Greek and two Albanian women, refused to go to the hospital to have the injuries treated. The attacker, Maria, was detained.
It is the second case of school bullying with dramatic consequences within a few months.
“I have good intentions but now I will make you laugh for the last time,” the young woman shouted according to eye-witnesses and started to stab around. It is unclear whether her aggression was only against these three specific women.While it was not clear yesterday what prompted the student’s amok, her parents, her classmates, notes found in her bag indicate but also according to her own testimony to prosecutor, Maria was a victim of bullying by young adults.
Appearing before the prosecutor today, Maria, claimed that her life had turned into a hell because some classmates were constantly were making fun of her.”
Her claim was confirmed by several other classmates who told the media, that Maria “was often mocked”, “exposed to racist attacks and verbal violence” even by students of other classes, mainly by young boys.
Media report of another incident a year ago, where Maria was involved into a brawl with two other women in the school. A psychologist was called in, the school wanted to expel Maria but several classmates manage to persuade the director to reverse the decision.
One classmate who was close to the attacker, told the media, Maria would have loved to abandon her studies but that she would continue because the studies were subsidized and she was financially helping her parents with the money.
“My daughter had no friends, she was introvert,” her mother told media adding that Maria was wanted to quit school.
“They were teasing her for the last two years, for her clothes, for not going out to cafeterias, for not smoking. During the last months she was permanently down, she had lost weight. I don’t know where she found the knives. Probably she wanted to protect herself.”
Her father told a news website that “they used to mock and swear at my child. They used to tell her, what are these clothes you wear, you’re a gypsy.”
The father said further that last year they had spoken with teachers about the issue, a psychologist had examined the daughter and told the family that everything was OK.
Maria was born in Greece to parents of diaspora Greeks from Kazakhstan.
“I did not want to do harm to anyone, I only wanted to scare and frighten them,” Maria reportedly told the prosecutor. She has been released from custody and ordered to be examined by mental health experts.
The incident shocks especially because the 22-year-old student is the second victim of bullying within a couple of weeks and thus with dramatic impact.
Bullying victim commits suicide
Vaggelis Giakoumakis, a student in a Dairy School in Ioannina chose to end his own life unable to cope any more with the bullying he suffered by a group of his classmates. One cold day in February, the 20-year-old “disappeared” from school and the dormitory. His body was found 40 days later. “It was a suicide,” read the coroner’s report. Testimonies from Vaggelis’ friends and classmates revealed that everybody in the school, teachers incl, knew that he was a victim of bullying for more than a year. No serious action was taken by the School management against this ugly and malicious practice.
After Giakoumakis case, KTG received a few reports by parents that their children had/have fallen victims of bullying in elementary and high school. In all cases, the parents said that the teachers had turned a blind eye to these incidents and that perpetrators’ parents turned against the victim’s parents.
In some cases the victim of the bullying was blamed for the situation.
It is highest time that Greece starts to take such incidents seriously, while the need to train school personnel and hire psychologists to assist the victims becomes more and more urgent.
The situation is already out of control.