The case of a dead North Carolina girl has reportedly turned into a homicide investigation as police revealed the 5-year-old was raped and strangled.
On November 13, staff at Pender Memorial Hospital notified police about Paitin Fields, who was admitted with injuries consistent with assault. A report obtained Friday by WECN revealed that Fields died two days later from injuries sustained when being raped and strangled.
“This case started out as an assault call. Then, two or three days into it, the victim dies and now we’re working as a homicide,” Pender police Captain James Rowell told the station.
A statement released by the police department indicated that information was withheld from the public while they conducted their investigation.
The department and local media were accused of focusing more on the disappearance and murder of Mariah Woods than Fields’ case. Rowell said that drawing parallels between Field and Woods are like “comparing apples to oranges,” with WECN noting that Fields was never considered a missing person.
“We understand there are many different opinions circulating in our community as to why more information has not been released concerning this investigation. Our detectives have remained in contact with Paitin’s immediate family and will continue to communicate with them concerning the investigation,” police said in the statement.
WECT reported that the FBI is not involved in this case. However, the State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) revealed that it was asked to perform a polygraph exam but couldn’t say on whom.
This is an ongoing investigation. Anyone with information about the murder is urged to call the Pender County Sheriff’s Office at 910-259-1212.
[Featured Image: Paitin Fields/Facebook]