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Mom warns parents of dangerous choking game

May 13, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
For the last few weeks Judy Rogg has been trying to come to terms with how her 12-year-old son died. Erik Robinson accidently killed himself last month after playing the 'choking game,' a dangerous practice where many teens choke themselves on purpose to get a euphoric high.

"He had hot chocolate on the table, he had his homework out, half done and scribbled on. He was taking a break," described Rogg. "I tried for a moment to get him down and I couldn't. I ran to the front door and screamed at the top of my lungs, and a half a dozen neighbors came running."

Rogg believes that her son had learned about the game from friends just days before. His death has shocked parents and teachers at Lincoln Middle School where Robinson was a sixth-grader.

"I am 100 percent certain that if he had an inkling of knowledge of what this might possibly do, he would not have done it," said Rogg.

According to the Dangerous Behaviors Foundation, more than 100 teens have died in the U.S. in 2006 from the dangerous game. The numbers have since decreased in recent years, but experts believe many cases are not being reported. Rogg is hoping to change that.

"I want this in educational programs. I'd like to see public service announcements like we see about drug prevention and things like that," she said.

Rogg says Robinson always dreamed of going to West Point and joining the army. Now, she says his legacy will live on in another way.

"I knew Erik would always make a big mark in this world. I never had any idea that this was the way he was going to leave his big mark," Rogg said.

A special meeting will be held Thursday at Lincoln Middle School addressing risk taking behaviors in teens. For the first time, the school will be educating parents about the 'choking game.' Rogg said she plans on attending, and it will be her first step in her outreach effort.


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