A 10-year-old girl from Santa Ana was discovered to have died on the afternoon of Oct. 13 by what seemed to be suicide, according to multiple reports. Authorities considered school bullying as a possible cause leading up to the death.
ABC 7 News reported that the 10-year-old girl was found by her younger sister in their home in the afternoon, according to the Santa Ana Police Department. CBS Los Angeles reported that the police department had received reports that the 10-year-old was possibly being bullied at her school, Hazard Elementary School, and were at the school on Oct. 14 as part of the investigation.
“We have heard rumors of bullying and are looking into that aspect,” a spokesperson for the police department said, according to ABC 7. “This is an ongoing investigation and we will be looking into the victim’s phone to identify whether there was any bullying.”
Police officials have begun interviewing those who knew the 10-year-old and collecting evidence that can explain what prompted the child to commit suicide, according to CBS Los Angeles. The news outlet also reported that the authorities will be looking into social media platforms and text messages to figure out whether either played a role in her death.
The Garden Grove Unified School District released a statement regarding the death of the 10-year-old and expressed their condolences for the passing of the young girl, according to CBS Los Angeles. The school district also stated although the Santa Ana Police Department is conducting their investigation into the death of the young girl, no evidence supports the rumors the 10-year-old was being bullied.
“We are deeply saddened by the tragic passing of one of our students. We have our crisis counselors on site today and throughout the week to ensure students and staff have support during this difficult time. While the Santa Ana Police Department is conducting a thorough investigation, we have no evidence to support this rumor [of bullying]. Hazard Elementary School has a longstanding PBIS (Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports) program and takes a proactive approach to promote a positive school culture,” the statement released by the school district read.
A resident of Santa Ana, Maria Castro, told CBS that it was a shock to learn that a young girl had taken her own life, saying, “we’ve been living here in this area for about over 30 years, and we never heard nothing like this. It’s really sad.”
According to a classmate, Jacob Ortiz, the 10-year-old was always nice and funny, saying, “she was always like funny…she was always really nice to everybody. She would give a lot of people hugs a lot,” CBS Los Angeles reported.
The news outlet reported a neighbor said, the 10-year-old’s parents monitored all of her social media accounts.
A rosary was planned at the 10-year-old girl’s home on the evening of Oct. 14, according to the news outlet.
According to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a report Vital Signs: Trends in State Suicide Rates on June 8, 2018, revealing that suicide rates have increased by 30 percent since 1999 in 25 states. The report points out that there can be a variety of factors other than mental health conditions that lead to suicide.
“Suicide rates increased significantly across most states during 1999-2016. Various circumstances contributed to suicides among persons with and without known mental health conditions,” the report stated.
If you or someone you know is showing signs that they might be suicidal, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 800-273-TALK. You can also text the Crisis Text Line at 741741.