GLASGOW, Mo. — A twist in the tragic story of a Glasgow teen’s suicide is making waves in the small Missouri town. Kenneth Suttner, 17, died last December when he took his own life outside of his family’s home in Howard County. County Coroner Frank Flaspohler took the unusual step of filing an inquest after he received multiple reports that the boy had been bullied relentlessly at school and at his place of work, Dairy Queen in Fayette. His former manager, Harley Branham, 21, of Fayette, has been charged with involuntary manslaughter in the second degree. She denies any wrongdoing.
The statement from the Glasgow School District, which was released on the district website, accuses the Howard County Coroner of malicious intent. School officials say that Mr. Flaspohler is making statements that he knows to be false. Flaspohler told the Associated Press last week that “. . . the District initially wasn’t cooperative after the death making a subpoena for the Inquest a way to get them to discuss the matter.” The school district called the coroner’s statement “a total fabrication.”
The District says they cooperated fully with the inquiry before ever being asked to do so, providing the coroner with District policies and procedures, educational records for multiple unnamed students and completed bullying incident reports, among other documents. The release also says that Mr. Flaspohler interviewed four Glasgow District teachers on January 23, 2017. The District says that the suggestion they were uncooperative is malicious and has called on the Howard County Coroner to formally and publicly apologize.