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CHILD WANDERS FROM HOME, PULLED FROM WATER
BSO BLOODHOUND LED DIVERS TO CANAL

BSO Case Number: LL12-02-00628
PIO Number: 12-2-6
Date: February 10, 2012
Time: 3:11 p.m.
Place of Occurrence: 3621 NW 23 Ct., Lauderdale Lakes
Jurisdiction: Lauderdale Lakes

Victim(s):

  • Jona Lilavois, 2 years, female, 12/17/09, Lauderdale Lakes (DECEASED)

Suspect(s):

  • N/A

Description of Incident:

A search for a missing 2½-year-old child ended in tragedy after she was pulled from a canal near her Lauderdale Lakes home Friday afternoon.

Around 2:30 p.m., the parents of Jona Lilavois briefly left her watching TV in the house while her mother went to retrieve lemons from a backyard tree and her father went to the restroom. When they returned, the child was gone. They searched the house looking for the little girl but couldn’t find her. The father called 9-1-1 at 3:11 p.m. and Broward Sheriff’s Office deputies and Broward Sheriff Fire Rescue units responded.

A massive search for the missing girl was quickly launched utilizing a BSO bloodhound K-9, divers and BSO Air Rescue. The bloodhound went down the block and across the street, leading the handler to a nearby canal. The dog picked up a scent and jumped into the water. The K-9 handler quickly alerted the divers and helicopter to the hit and they pulled the unresponsive, pulseless tot from the water. BSFR paramedics were standing by and immediately began resuscitation attempts on the victim. She was airlifted to Broward General Medical Center where she died just before 5:30 p.m.

BSO homicide detectives have determined the home’s front door wasn’t secured and the child slipped out and wandered off. The Broward County Medical Examiner’s Office will conduct an autopsy to determine the cause of death, although it appears at this time to be an accidental drowning.
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INVESTIGATORS: D-4, CID, Homicide, BSFR, Crime Scene, Det. Forsberg
THIS REPORT BY: Mike Jachles/PIO 02/10/12 2045

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