Special Needs Girl in Texas Bombarded with Disgusting Texts
Shea Shawhan of Plano is beautiful 18 year old girl who cheers and plays softball for Plano West Senior High School. She’s also prone to seizures and has the mental capacity of an 8-year-old due to a brain injury she suffered at birth, and for the past eight months she’s been subjected to anonymous bullying texts.
“Ugly”, “slut” and “freak” are words frequently used in the texts that are being sent from fake phone numbers generated by an online application.
“It’s so obvious u have no friends,” reads one message. “Only special needs kids bc those r the easy ones. They have no right brain. It makes sense b cur a retarded freak.”
Horrendous texts like that are awful enough, but others have urged Shawhan to kill herself and mocked her fashion sense and lack of a date to the school’s homecoming dance. Worse still, at least one message even went so far as to threaten Shawhan with sexual assault.
“Shea is so annoying but cute,” it read. “I want to do more than just kiss her I want to rape her then kill her. That will finally make sure she goes away for good.”
Kerri Riddell, Shawhan’s mother, believes a group of kids at her daughter’s school must be responsible for these attacks and can’t imagine how anyone could stoop so low as to send messages like this to a girl like her daughter.
“She's so sweet and I'm so frustrated,” Riddell told a Dallas-Fort Worth news station. “I can't find out who it is. I just want to find that parent and say, ‘What did you do? Do you know your child is doing this?””
Riddell has changed her daughter’s cell phone number and blocked several of the fake numbers, but messages are still getting through.
Neither mother nor daughter is taking this lying down, though. Riddell started a Facebook page and Twitter feed on her daughter’s behalf that gained around 19,000 followers in the first 24 hours. At a football game Friday night, students and supporters wore “I’m with Shea” t-shirts.
Shawhan has received nationwide support since her story hit the web, and she was even personally invited to a Dallas Mavericks game by owner Mark Cuban. The teen shook hands with Cuban and even posed for photos with the Mavericks cheerleaders.
Meanwhile, Plano Police Department has assigned a detective to work with officials at Shawhan’s school to determine who is behind the disgusting texts.
Officer David Tilley with the Plano PD urged other parents to get involved during a TV news interview. "Parents watching what their kids are doing on their cell phones and online are more important now than before,” he said.
On a positive note, Shawhan does, in fact, have a date for the homecoming dance. BOOYA!