Lawyer: Jena Six teen shot himself out of despair

Associated Press - December 30, 2008 4:13 PM ET

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - A lawyer in Louisiana says 1 of the teens in the Jena Six case shot himself yesterday out of despair.

Attorney Louis Scott says Mychal Bell was worried that his recent arrest for shoplifting would ruin his dream of playing college football. Authorities say Bell remains hospitalized with a chest wound that is not life-threatening.

Bell was 1 of a group of black teens who once faced attempted murder charges in the 2006 beating of a white classmate at Jena High School.

The charges for all defendants were later reduced. But the case brought widespread criticism. It also drew more than 20,000 people to the tiny town of Jena for a civil rights march.

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