Girl found dead in bed died of blunt trauma to stomach

A post-mortem examination performed yesterday on the body of ten-year-old Roseann Akeila Harris, who died on Saturday, days after she was kicked, allegedly by a classmate, revealed that she died of blunt trauma to the stomach.

The child’s mother, Samantha Peters said yesterday that she was determined to obtain justice and her family will not be accepting any form of compensation from the classmate’s relatives. “We can’t let it go down just like that. I lost a big child… It’s a big loss to my family,” Peters said.

While a police source told Stabroek News that investigations into the matter are ongoing, Peters said that based on what she was told yesterday the police have managed to locate the classmate’s parents.

Dead: Roseann Akeila Harris

She said they have revealed that the incident has left the classmate traumatized and he was not speaking to anyone.

“They said he’s not saying anything, but his mother told me that he admit to her that he did kick my daughter, but didn’t expect it to be so serious,” Peters explained.

Harris, a Grade Five pupil of St Stephen’s Primary School and of Lot 9 Public Road, La Penitence died on Saturday morning, days after she was kicked in her abdomen.

Prior to her death, the child had related to her relatives that one of her male classmates inflicted the kick on March 24 at the school around midday, during a verbal altercation.

Harris was taken to the Georgetown Public Hospital where she was treated and sent away.

On Friday last, she was again taken to the hospital after complaining about pain in her abdomen and returned home hours later, having not seen a doctor. She was discovered lying motionless on her bed on Saturday morning by Peters. There are no visible marks of violence on her body.

Peters had explained to this newspaper that when Harris returned from school on the afternoon of on March 24, she noticed that she was not her normal self and enquired what was wrong.

“She said she did standing up by she class door and the boy did want pass and she tell he no the teacher don’t want anyone in the class and he kick she in she belly,” Peters explained.

The woman said she asked Harris what she did afterwards and she said that she went to the classmate’s mother, who was at the school, and complained.

“So I ask she what he mother say and she tell me that the lady ask he and he seh he never do that and she just say sorry and that was it,” she had said.

According to Peters, since the incident, Harris was constantly complaining about pain and was vomiting. She explained that on the first occasion when she took her to the hospital, doctors ordered an ultrasound and an x-ray, but neither reportedly revealed any injury.

As a result, she was sent away.

“Yesterday [Saturday] morning before ah go wash, I peep she and tell she when I done I gon bathe her and so but while washing she sister come and tell me that she ain’t moving,” she said, adding that in disbelief she went and checked only to confirm what she had been told. The woman explained that the kicking incident was not the first in which the same classmate allegedly hurt her daughter.

She said Harris had previously returned home with bruises to her ankle and knee and when she enquired, her daughter had said that the said classmate had thrown her down in school.

She said her daughter’s father had gone to the school a few times to lodge complaints.

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