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Students Find Body of Suicide Victim near School

Updated: September 27, 2019 08:40 PM

Students and a teacher exploring the forest behind the Lowell Elementary found a body on Friday morning.  Police said it appears the person died by suicide and an investigation is underway.  School officials say police do not believe the person had any connection to Lowell. 

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Parents were notified quickly via call from the principal. Jen Larva said they were bringing in mental health services for students and staff.

A fire truck and police squad were seen in the back of the school. A police van and a couple of other vehicles were parked on the hill before the forest.

The school says after-school activities have been canceled.

A letter from Principal Jen Larva was emailed to all parents. In it, Larva explains how the school handled the situation at the school.

"Initial police investigation indicates it was a suicide by hanging. The school is safe and there has been no threat to our school," the letter says.

Larva added, "The vast majority of students did not witness anything regarding this event besides emergency vehicles in the parking lot." The letter goes on to say that students in Sra. Stuecher's classroom were within viewing of the scene and the families have been individually contacted and support provided. The school and district crisis team continues to work with Duluth Police.

The letter included the message that was given to the students by their teacher:
"The police responded to a medical emergency in the forest near our school today. The school and the school forest are safe and you were never in harms way. We shared this information with your families. If you have any questions about what may have happened here today, we encourage you to talk with your family."

The letter also included tips on how to talk to a child about the incident and what signs of stress to look out for. 

Copyright 2019 WDIO-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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