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Man, 25, arrested after boy dies in ‘TikTok craze gone wrong’ leaving family devastated’ | UK | News


Man, 25, arrested after boy dies in ‘TikTok craze gone wrong’ leaving family devastated' | UK | News


A man has been arrested on suspicion of child cruelty after an 11-year-old boy died in a “TikTok craze” which went wrong.

Tommie-lee Gracie Billington lost consciousness at a sleepover at a friend’s house in Lancaster on March 2 after “inhaling toxic substances”.

He suffered a cardiac arrest in front of his pals and was taken to hospital where he died a short time later.

The TikTok craze involves inhaling substances which can lead to dizziness, nausea, hallucinations and feeling disoriented.

Lancashire Police has arrested a man, 25, from Lancaster, on suspicion of child cruelty, neglect, possession with intent to supply a drug and money laundering.

 

He has since been released on bail as officers continue their enquiries. A woman, 35, has been released under investigation after she was interviewed voluntarily. That related to an allegation of possession with intent to supply.

Tommie-lee’s distraught mum, Sherri, issued a warning to parents amid the tragedy, writing on Facebook: “As much as I hate talking about it, I need to raise awareness of what kids are trying nowadays.

“This cost my son his life from trying something other kids are doing. They are using this and breathing them in to try get a buzz. It is beyond me why anyone would even try this. It’s so dangerous.”

She explained Tommie-lee had stayed at a friend’s and was inhaling a substance with his pal that “cost him his poor, young life”.

Sherri urged parents to talk to their children about the consequences of the craze.

Tommie-lee’s devastated grandmother, Tina Burns, paid tribute to her grandson, saying: “He had a heart of gold just like his dad. Our family is utterly devastated.”

The teaching assistant told The Sun hospital staff did everything to try and bring Tommie-lee back but nothing worked. She added: “He was gone.

“Both our families are utterly devastated but we all want the same thing. We don’t want any other children to follow TikTok or be on social media.”

She said the family wants TikTok taken down and for children under 16 not to be allowed on social media. Ms Burns said: “This is breaking us all, but we want to help save other children’s lives and give families awareness to keep their children safe.”

TikTok has been approached for comment.

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