10-Year-Old Girl Dies in After-School Fight Over a Boy

hopscotchThis is one of those stories that makes me want to lock up my children and never let them leave the house again, or move to a deserted island where no one could ever harm them. Something, somewhere where things like the tragic senseless death of 10-year-old Joanna Ramos aren't possible.

It happened in Long Beach, California, one day after classes at Willard Elementary School in February. According to the Los Angeles Times, Ramos and an 11-year-old schoolmate were reportedly arguing over what many fourth grade girls argue over -- a boy. They planned to meet after school and fight it out in an alley near the school, and that's when the plan went horribly wrong.

The whole fight lasted only about one minute, according to reports, and while a few punches were thrown, both girls headed home to their respective families shortly thereafter. Hours later, however, Ramos was dead from blunt-force head trauma.

The story is making headlines again because yesterday, it was announced that while her death was ruled a homicide, prosecutors won't file any charges against the 11-year-old. And while Ramos's mother expressed frustration over this move, it's difficult to see what good it would do anyway.

As horrible I feel for Ramos's family, I feel almost as awful for the 11-year-old who killed her. By all accounts both girls were fighting, and it could have easily gone the other way. Now she will have to live the rest of her life knowing that someone died at her hands. I can't even begin to imagine how one little mistake with such enormous consequences can forever alter someone's life. I image the struggle it must be to even go on for both families, though at least one still has their daughter there with them.

Was it an isolated freak incident? Sure, and tragic accidents happen every day to children, but this one doesn't shake me to my core any less. I think of my sweet, innocent 3-year-old daughter, and all of the hurdles and issues she will have to face in the future, and cases like this make it almost unbearable.

Do you think the 11-year-old should have been charged in this case?


Image via humbert15/Flickr

girls, in the news, kid health


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LoSawyer LoSawyer

Sorry, I don't feel bad for the other girl, you know the one who's still alive. She probably feels like such a badass now. "I killed somebody in a fight and got away with it".

corri... corrinacs

I don't know, depends on the case.....but I think she should definitely be disciplined for fighting and taught the seriousness of the situation!  This is sad :/.

elle7777 elle7777

No. They both chose to engage in "mutual combat".  The child's death was an unfortunate consequence of said combat. It could have just as easily been the other girl that died...and what good would it do to prosecute her? What justice would come of it?

elle7777 elle7777

Oh yes. I'm sure she feels like a "badass".  *sarcasm* Just like I would have if I accidentally killed my best friend when I was 11 when we had a stupid immature fist fight and made up the next day.

the4m... the4mutts

No, I don't. I agree with elle7777. They agreed to fight. One didn't "jump" the other unexpectedly. It was a tragic consequence.

zandh... zandhmom2

I also agree with elle7777.  It was a mutual fight.  If one girl is called horrible for being in the fight, then the other girl should be called horrible for also being in the fight.  And seriously, why are 10 & 11 yr old girls fighting over a boy???

kokos... kokosmommy2009

Awful. Brings tears to my eyes. And i agree with the author. That poor 11 year old child as well. And lets not forget the poor boy they fought over. Its hard to explain to a child that these things can happen so easily. I guess the most important thing to do as parents is instill that hitting is not acceptable from a very young age and HOPE our children turn out ok. I say HOPE because as much as we try to protect them, we have no way of controlling their actions and lives 24/7.  sad.  Prayers go out to all families involved.

Desir... Desireesmom2011

Losawer really??? are you serious? She most likely doesn't feel like a bad-ass shes probably traumatized. I have gotten into a lot of fights when I was younger and yes at the time I might have said I wanted to kill the people but I actually didn't. If I had accidentally killed one of those girls I would never have been able to forgive myself. This little girl didn't think she was going to kill the other she just wanted to hurt her cause she was mad about something at the time. She accidentally hit her wrong and she happened to die. Accidents happen. I do think she should be punished but definitely not charged with murder. Maybe some community service. I feel horrible for both girls and their families. It was a tragic accident.

paren... parentalrights1

No I don't think she should have been charged. I remember being their age and alot of kids thought it was somehow cool to fight over stupid stuff like this. They weren't necessarily bad, just stupid and immature kids that didn't really think anything bad would happen. This girl is literally just a child and has learned her lesson I'm sure. I think it's idiotic to think she's proud of herself for getting away with murder.

What needs to be done is parents and teachers need to talk to kids about fighting and not being stupid.

paren... parentalrights1

What's going to happen now is the 11 year old is going to mature just like everyone else and know that fighting like that is dumb, but have the added bonus of remember that when she engaged in a fight like many kids do, she accidentally killed the girl and the boy isn't going to matter at all to her in a few months probably. They both deserve sympathy.

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