A little girl has died six months after a relative forced her to drink boiling water through a straw.
The New York Post reports that Ki’ari Pope, 8, complained of having trouble breathing on Sunday before becoming unresponsive. She was taken to a hospital and died shortly after midnight.
Ki’ari had reportedly suffered numerous health problems since she accepted a dare from her cousin in March to drink boiling water. She lost her hearing and had chronic respiratory issues, and required a tracheotomy.
Though the little girl’s family said she accepted the dare to drink boiling water while spending time with young cousins, there had been numerous allegations of abuse or neglect since Ki’ari was born. The Palm Beach Post reports that in the last several months, there have been charges of violence between Ki’ari’s mother and her boyfriend. There was also an unspecified police incident in June while an adult relative was watching Ki’ari.
The Department of Children and Families (DCF) addressed the tragedy in a statement.
“The loss of this child is truly devastating and our condolences go out to all those who loved her,” Mike Carroll said on Wednesday. “We have opened a child death investigation to examine the circumstances surrounding her death and will deploy a Critical Incident Rapid Response Team to review all interactions this family has had with Florida’s child welfare system.
The DCF’s Critical Incident Rapid Response Team will reportedly be looking into the little girl’s death.
Relatives have launched a GoFundMe campaign to help raise funeral costs.
Feature photo: GoFundMe