Girl found hanged at home in Rialto

RIALTO "It takes my breath away to think that something this horrible has happened," said Cheryl Thompson, Morgan Elementary school parent.

The disturbing news was delivered to parents in the form of a letter Thursday afternoon, as they picked up their children at Morgan Elementary.

Parent Cheryl Thompson read the brief letter.

"It is with great sadness that we inform you of the death of a Morgan Elementary School student. Our school community is affected by the loss of our student. Rialto Unified School District psychologists are on site to meet with and support both staff and students for as long as needed."

The 8-year-old girl was found dead by family members in her bedroom in her Rialto home Wednesday at about 7:00 p.m.

"They found that the door was locked. Entry was made into the bedroom by family members who found her hanging from a bunk bed with a belt around her neck," said Lt. Joe Cirilo, Rialto Police Department.

While police say it appears to be a suicide, investigators are not ruling out that it may have been just a horrible accident.

School district officials say that grief councilors were on hand Thursday for students and staff who were shocked by the death of the 3rd grader who was always described as a typical 8-year-old girl.

"According to staff and the principal, she was just an average student and got good grades. She did what any 8-year-old child would do. That is why we are shocked by this. This was not coming. This was not something that anyone foresaw," said Syeda Jafri, Rialto Unified School District.

The 8-year-old lived with her grandmother and her two older sisters. Police say that the entire family is completely distraught.

"We'll continue to talk to family members so we can try to bring some sense into what led up to this tragic event," said said Lt. Cirilo.

Officers checked the girl's computer, cell phone and text messages but didn't find a suicide note or any indication she was considering taking her life.


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