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Investigation underway after 8-year-old girl allegedly asphyxiated in Uptown: report

CHICAGO — Authorities are investigating after an 8-year-old girl was found unresponsive inside an Uptown apartment.

Details surrounding the death of Amaria Osby remain limited but the girl allegedly died from asphyxiation, reports the Chicago Tribune. WGN News has learned that Chicago police are awaiting confirmation from the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office.

On Thursday, neighbors who spoke with WGN News expressed heartbreak over Amaria’s sudden death.

“I feel very sad, I feel very hurt,” said Gladys Torres.

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Around 11 am Wednesday, police discovered Amaria unresponsive inside an Uptown-area apartment in the 4600 block of Winthrop. Neighbors said the girl lived with her mom. When authorities arrived at the scene, they said a 38-year-old woman, believed to be Amaria’s mother, was taken to Weiss Hospital in good condition.

“The mother is always taking care of the daughter very well,” Torres said. “I have never seen anything bad.”

WGN News reached out to the state’s Department of Children and Family Services upon learning that an investigator had visited the girl’s home a day before her death.

In response, DCFS said: “The Department of Children and Family Services had prior contact with this family, including a visit on May 24 with the mother and daughter where no signs of abuse, neglect or danger were noted by our investigator. This family previously participated in intact family services from a substance abuse-related incident in 2017. The recent visit was the result of an allegation of domestic violence and was the first contact with the family since closing the prior case in 2018.”

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DCFS added that the domestic violence allegation involved abuse of one parent by the other, not abuse of the child.

Neighbors say they treated Amaria like family and miss her deeply.

“A very happy baby every year for Christmas,” Torres said. “I would get her a little gift and for her birthday because her birthday was March 24 and that’s my son’s birthday.

“She was a beautiful girl, very friendly with me and the neighbors too, but a very, very good girl.”

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