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Parents were told teen may have been suicidal before fatal jump

June 1, 2012 |  3:18 pm

Drew Ferraro

The parents of 15-year-old sophomore who jumped to his death from a Crescenta Valley High School building had been notified that the teen "was thought to have been suicidal," according to public records released this week.

Drew Ferraro jumped to his death Feb. 10 in front of dozens of students. Four suicide notes were found in his backpack nearby, authorities said.

Toxicology results included in the report also showed trace amounts of marijuana and anti-depressants in his bloodstream, the Glendale News-Press reported.

The toxicology results and comprehensive autopsy report largely reflect statements by Los Angeles County sheriff's investigators that Drew had been battling depression.

"There was a report that he was thought to have been suicidal on the day before his death," according to the coroner investigator's narrative included in the autopsy report. "His parents had been informed; however, [Drew] did not go home from school, and he had been attending school the day of his death."

Drew's parents, John and Deana Ferraro, released a statement refuting that part of the report.

"We were not notified of him being suicidal the day prior or he would not have been at school," the statement reads. "We know he suffered from anxiety and depression, which was being treated. Had we any indication, we would have taken him to his therapist and kept him home until he was doing better."

In interviews in the weeks after Drew's death, the Ferraros were adamant in their assertions that bullying played a role in the suicide.

Their son documented harassment in journal entries that they read only after his death, they said, and classmates have shared additional information.

Law enforcement and school officials have maintained that they don't believe bullying was a factor, noting that none of the four suicide notes referenced anything of the kind.

"His suicide notes were very telling," Los Angeles Sheriff's Lt. John Corina said in the wake of his department's investigation. "They didn't mention anything about being abused or being bullied. He gave a different reason for doing what he did."

Authorities have declined to reveal the contents of the letters, and they were not included in the coroner's investigation.


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-- Megan O'Neil, Times Community News

Photo: A memorial with a portrait of Drew Ferraro at Crescenta Valley High School in February. Credit: Raul Roa / Times Community News