PORTSMOUTH, R.I. (WPRI) — A redacted version of the report outlining the events leading up to the suicide of a Portsmouth High School student was released this week.
Nathan Bruno took his own life on Feb. 7, 2018.
The following June, Ryan Moniz was removed by the school committee as coach of the school’s football team as a result of the report’s findings.
According to the report, Nathan sent prank calls and texts to Moniz. Emails included in the report reveal Nathan’s father, Rick Bruno, set up a time for his son to apologize to Moniz in person.
Moniz was then shocked to learn that two other students were involved, the report states, so he called a team meeting, during which he said he would resign unless the two others were named.
The report goes on to say that moment created a divide between Nathan and the rest of the team.
“All teens are vulnerable to these emotional heart attacks,” Rick Bruno said.
Rick said he hopes the report will allow the community to learn and grow from his son’s death, adding that he believes “if this was handled properly on all levels, Nathan would still be with us today.”
An attorney for Moniz said that while Nathan’s death is tragic, his client is not at fault and the report doesn’t paint a fair picture. They are considering litigation because they claim Moniz has faced damage to his reputation and long-term job consequences because of the report.
While Moniz lost his coaching job, he’s still employed as an educator at Portsmouth High School.
The school department had no comment on the report’s release.
Earlier this year, Rick and others pushed legislation to provide more suicide education training in schools. The bill, which is supported by Be Great for Nate – a nonprofit set up in Nathan’s honor – and the Every Student Initiative, was held for further study.
The groups plan to resubmit the bill next legislative session.