Investigators looking into cyber-bullying as part of young woman’s death investigation

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TAZEWELL COUNTY, Va. (WJHL)- Wednesday afternoon Tazewell County Sheriff Brian Hieatt released a statement following a young woman’s death in Southwest Virginia.

Sheriff Hieatt identified the young woman as Kayla Hodges.

The sheriff said he sent the statement after he said he’s received “numerous calls of concern from citizens in the community about the circumstances surrounding this tragedy.”

The sheriff said they are continuing to investigate a young woman’s death and are not rushing to judgment, but did say from what they’ve gathered so far, “has opened a door into incidents of online bullying that may have been occurring with people located in various parts of the United States. This cyber-bullying included a fake social media account pretending to be her, among other things that were happening online.”

Sheriff Hieatt went on to say that if they are able to prove that any of the on-line acts had any part of the young woman’s death, “they will be prosecuted.”

In that statement, Sheriff Hieatt also encouraged anyone who had any information about Kayla’s death to contact Sergeant Mike Hall at 276-988-1157

Sheriff Hieatt said this is the second suicide to happen in their community in recent months. 

Stay with News Channel 11 as we continue to follow this developing story. 

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