Sussex Tech on lockdown following student suicide

A 15-year-old girl died Nov. 15 at Sussex Tech in what police say was an apparent suicide. SOURCE FILE
November 15, 2013

A Sussex Tech student found unconscious Nov. 15 in a school restroom apparently committed suicide, police say.

A Sussex Tech staff member found a 15-year-old girl unresponsive at 11 a.m. in a first-floor restroom near the cafeteria, said Sgt. Paul Shavack of the Delaware State Police.

The staff member alerted other staff members, who administered CPR to the girl. The Georgetown girl was taken by ambulance to a local hospital where she was pronounced dead, Shavack said.

Delaware State Police are investigating the girl's death. Preliminary reports classify the death as an apparent suicide, Shavack said. Police are working with the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner to determine the cause and manner of death.

Sussex Tech remained on low-level lockdown during the investigation. There were no threats to the safety of the students or faculty during this incident; no weapons were used in the incident, Shavack said.

Carolyn O'Neal, public information officer for Sussex Tech, said the school was placed on lockdown after the girl was found in distress and rendered unconscious.

"The Sussex Technical School District is heartbroken over the tragic loss of one of our students. Our hearts, thoughts and prayers go out to the family members and friends of those involved. At this very difficult time, our focus is on providing counseling and support to our students and staff," she said in a prepared statement.

She said any student in need of a counselor outside the school setting should call the crisis hotline at 1-800-969-4357.

No cause or manner of death had yet been released by the Medical Examiner's Office as of the Gazette's deadline.

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