Netflix film sparks conversation about sexual violence and cyberbulling

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LADDONIA -A new Netflix documentary has schools around mid-Missouri talking to its students about the dangers of sexual violence and cyberbullying.

Community R-6 School, Laddonia offered a free viewing of the documentary "Audrie and Daisy" Thursday night.

It tells the story of two high-profile cases, one that happened in Maryville when a then 14-year-old girl accused a 17-year-old boy of rape and the ensuing criminal case.

Audrain County Prosecuting Attorney Jacob Shellabarger said this topic can not be ignored. 

"We think in our communities we all know each other, and it can't happen here but it can. This is a courageous step for these school districts to join with us and the Missouri Military Academy and all our sponsors to have this conversation here. If we think it won't happen here then we can't talk about it when it does," Shellabarger said.

He said people think events like this can't happen to their town.

"Not only can it but it does. There are so many cases that we see not just in our juvenile system but our criminal justice system that involve social media harassment, social media bullying, sexual assault and these things," Shellabarger said. 

Principal Bob Curtis said they have a plan in place to deal with situations such as these.

"I think like any district we're constantly monitoring our students online and just their behavior and we have a resource officer. We have a wonderful counselor that works with our kids in these situations and we try to get informed early so we can squash it out before it's too big of an issue. And we communicate with parents which is important because at home sometimes we don't know whats occurring online," Curtis said.

He hoped the film would help spark conversations not only with students but parents as well. 

"We want to have conversations as adults to help kids, guide them in the right direction in these situations," Curtis said.

The Audrain County Prosecuting Attorney's Office is sponsoring the event and four other showings across mid-Missouri.

The next showing will be on Wednesday, October 19 at the Missouri Military Academy in Mexico at 6 p.m.