6-Year-Old Found Hanging by Her Jump Rope with Suicide Note Nearby

Police are investigating whether a 6-year-old girl was really able to hang herself with a jump rope and leave behind two suicide notes. The girl, Kendrea Johnson, was living in foster care and was found in her bedroom by her foster father hanging from a noose made from a jump rope. Nearby, she had possibly used a white bucket to climb up to hang the noose. Also nearby were two suicide notes written in purple marker.


Reportedly, one note said, "I'm sorry," and the other said, "I'm sad for what I do."

Johnson and her 1-year-old brother had been placed in foster care with Tannise and Adrea Nawaqavou of Brooklyn Park, Minnesota, after it was determined that their mother was a drug abuser who could not keep them safe.

After that, Johnson's behavior reportedly began changing. Experts said she had suicidal tendencies and "showed severe guilt, as she does not feel lovable or acceptable and reports feeling guilty and responsible for out-of-home placement."

Johnson's foster mom reported that she once tried to kill her with a screwdriver, and also that she wanted to jump out of a window. Reportedly, at school she drew pictures of a child hanging from a rope. She was receiving intense behavioral therapy. One exam said that she had gone from feeling suicidal seven days a week to "only" five.

Yet at first police were suspicious that a 6-year-old would not only have the concept of hanging herself, but know how to tie a knot and make a noose. An initial police report noted that the knot appeared "too sophisticated" for a child to make.

Johnson's grandmother told The Star Tribune that Johnson was a "happy-go-lucky kid" and that she believes someone killed her.

But experts say that while young children rarely commit suicide, it does happen. Two child therapists who reviewed the child's records for the Star Tribune thought that all of the factors for a child suicide were in place.

The chief in charge of the investigation says police may never know whether it was suicide or an accident.

It's hard enough to conceive of a teen hanging him or herself, but a 6-year-old? Someone that young may want to stop her pain, may want to "die," but how on earth does she know how to hang herself?

What a horrible position for the foster parents to be in -- not only will they carry guilt from this happening on their watch, but they may even draw suspicion that something more nefarious happened.

And the poor little girl. How does any child who has been on this planet for such a short time get so miserable? It just breaks your heart. You want to hug all children like this, tell them it will get better, and make it better for them.

More from The Stir: Girl Commits Suicide to Donate Organs to Her Sick Family

It also goes to show how complex removing children from their biological parents, no matter how harmful they may be, is. Children love their parents no matter what, and the harm of removing a young child from his or her dysfunctional parent may sometimes outweigh the good.

If you are concerned about yourself or someone else, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

Image via Steven DePolo/Flickr


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