Irish police are investigating claims that a 12-year-old girl who took her own life was the victim of bullying.

The latest bullying case in Ireland involves the death of Lara Burns in the Kildare town of Maynooth.

Lara took her own life on Saturday night and her heartbroken parents have asked police to investigate the circumstances surrounding her death.

The Irish Sun reports that officers are now actively investigating whether Lara may have been the victim of bullying.

A source told the paper: “An investigation into this girl’s death has been launched by police after her parents expressed some concerns.”

Another local source, who asked not to be named, said: “The rumours going around Maynooth are that she was a victim of bullying, but it’s very hard to know at this stage.

“We don’t know the full circumstances of her death yet, we’ll have to wait and see.”

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Friends of the schoolgirl have paid tribute to her on social media.

The paper reports that one said: “rip lara . . my heart goes out to ur family and friends. ths should not hav happend it is a total disgrace that some people think its ok to bully a young girl to death... heartbreakin. [sic]”

Another wrote: “It’s sick to see what bullying makes people do. Yesterday we lost a innocent girl because of it. We have to take action. R.I.P.”

Lara’s suicide is the third teenage death in Ireland to be linked with bullying in recent months following cases in Leitrim and Donegal.