A 10-year-old L.A.-area girl is dead, and authorities are investigating whether she was killed as part of a sexual assault.
Sheriff's deputies were called Saturday morning to a residence int he 4800 block of 132nd Street in an unincorporated part of the county near Hawthorne that's known as Del Aire, according to the Daily Breeze. The girl was found unresponsive, and E.R. doctors said she might have been sexually assaulted.
It's up to the county coroner's office to decide what killed the victim, and so far investigators there have not come to a conclusion.
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The victim was identified as Amanda Cooper. Neighbors told the paper that she could not communicate well. Television reports stated she might have been developmentally disabled.
A neighbor told the Breeze she heard the girl moaning and shouting at night but didn't think to call authorities because she made the same noises in public, during the day.
Children from the same residence told neighbors that the lived with their mom and their stepfather in one unit of a duplex, according to the Breeze.
One neighbor said the kids routinely played out front in a paved area covered in bird droppings, and that the children seemed neglected.