ORANGE, Conn. (WPIX)—Isabella Oleschuk, the 13-year-old Connecticut girl who disappeared over the weekend, has been found. More than a hundred people searched for her ever since she was reported missing Sunday morning. And now, the rumor is that the usually-dependable, hearing-impaired teen ran away because she was driven to the brink of a breakdown from bullying.
For four days, hundreds searched. They came up with nothing. Then, someone spotted something moving in an abandoned farm stand, four miles from Oleschuk's home. The little girl known as Bella was found. Cops say she survived on pop tarts, granola bars and juice.
Local Connecticut reporter Kathleen Schurman writes for the website BethwoodPatch.com. She reports that several teens contacted her to tell how Isabella was bullied repeatedly. Apparently, she'd told several kids she was going to run away because she didn't want to go back to Amity Regional Middle School. Schurman says she reported this to the police.
On Thursday, the state is trying to beef up the their anti-bullying laws. But make no mistake, no matter where you live, Connecticut, Long Island, New Jersey, or New York City, bullying affects everyone.
Now, teens across the area are trying to help stop anti-bullying. A group of 8th graders from Long Branch, New Jersey made a music video to the tune of Enrique Iglesias summer smash hit, "I Like It." Instead titled "Bullying: We'll Stop It."
The teens say they were moved to act by the tragic suicide of Rutgers University student Tyler Clementi as well as their own experiences. The anti-bullying anthem has been a hit on YouTube.
Recently, the Long Branch Middle School students traveled to Washington, D.C. to meet with NJ Senator Robert Menendez to get the word out. They also travel to local schools to share their message.
And in Long Island, YouTube sensation Jenna Rose is getting in the game. The Dix Hills native has already racked up more than a million hits on YouTube with her music video, "My Jeans." Her next song will address the topic of bullying. She will sing it for the first time on the PIX 11 Morning News Friday.