SANTA ANA, CA (Meredith) -- Police are investigating the death of a 10-year-old girl in California who died by suicide.
Family identified the girl as Allison Wendel, according to KTLA.
According to officials, Allison died at home on Sunday. Police said her 9-year-old sister was the one who found her.
Santa Ana detectives were at Hazard Elementary School on Monday investigating reports that the fifth grader may have been bullied.
Officers said they would be interviewing those who knew Allison, as well as looking at social media and text messages to try to determine if bullying was a factor in her death, KCAL reports.
Students at the school told KTLA Tuesday they knew Allison was being bullied because it was posted on social media. But according to a neighbor, Allison’s parents monitored her social media accounts.
If bullying is a factor, Santa Ana Police Department Cpl. Anthony Bertagna said police would have to determine who did the bullying and look at their ages to decide whether they will face any charges.
Garden Grove Unified School District said in a statement:
“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. Hazard Elementary School has a longstanding PBIS (Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports) program and takes a proactive approach to promote a positive school culture.”
A GoFundMe campaign has been set up to raise funds for Wendel's funeral and counseling for her 9-year-old sister.
If you or someone you know is in emotional distress or suicidal crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
For more information about mental health care resources and support, The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) HelpLine can be reached Monday through Friday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m. ET, at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264) or email email@example.com.