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Girl, 11 found hanging from clothes line

By STACY MOORE Sunday, June 15 2014

AN 11-year-old girl was found with a cloth wrapped around her body and covering her neck, hanging dead from a clothing line near her Williamsville home on Friday evening.

Investigators have classed the girl’s death as a freak accident as it is believed that Rihanna Briggs accidently became entangled in the clothing line while at play.

Police reports state that Rihanna, a Standard Four student at the Hardbargain Government Primary School, was last seen alive by relatives playing inside an unfinished building opposite her Dyres Village, Williamsville home.

Rihanna’s body was discovered by her aunt Laura who found her niece entangled in a piece of clothing hanging from the line and which was also around her neck.

When Sunday Newsday visited the family home yesterday, relatives were crying openly. The dead girl’s mother, Angela Briggs, who reportedly suffers from hypretension, had to be rushed to the hospital when her blood pressure became unstable. Reports are that Briggs was not at home at the time of the incident and Rihanna was left in the care of relatives.

Briggs’ cousin Wanda Campbell yesterday told Sunday Newsday that Rihanna came home from school on Friday and was seen playing with her cousins in the unfinished structure. She said the children were accustomed to playing in the building on evenings.

Campbell said Rihanna was last seen alive playing with her cousin Eve.

“I was told that Eve mother’s Laura took Eve to bathe and left Rihanna playing and dancing in the structure,” Campbell said. Campbell said that when Laura returned she said she saw Rihanna on the ground with a piece of clothing around her neck.

Campbell said that she was nearby when she heard relatives shouting her name.

“They say Wanda, Wanda come quick. I think Rihanna break her neck. I shouted, no, no, no, no don’t say that. No, no,” Campbell said in tears.

She said as she approached the area she saw Rihanna’s body on the ground.

“She was not moving and they was trying to do CPR on her. I knew she was dead because her tongue was out of her mouth and changing colour,” she said.

The visibly distraught woman said, “I never thought this would have happened. You read about these things and now it hit home. I can’t believe she is gone. I can’t get my hands on how it happened exactly, but I know somewhere between her playing and dancing by those lines she got tangled up.”

Campbell said Rihanna was always a jolly girl.

“She could never stay one place. Every time you see Rihanna, she running and dancing. She was such a happy and beautiful child.”

Rihanna was the youngest of her five siblings.

An autopsy is expected to be performed tomorrow at the Forensic Science Centre.

Princes Town Police officers are continuing investigations.

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