LONG BEACH (CBS) — The Long Beach Police Department announced Wednesday that prosecutors have decided not to file charges in the case of a 10-year-old girl who died following an after-school fight.
Joanna Ramos, 10, died Feb. 24 following a fight in an alley with a classmate, Long Beach Police said. Fellow students at Willard Elementary School said the fight was over a boy.
Long Beach police issued a statement saying the case was “a fight between two children that ended with unintended and tragic results, and the Long Beach Police Department hopes that its conclusion brings some peace to both families involved, as well as the community.”
“This case was a fight between two children that ended with unintended and tragic results, and the Long Beach Police Department hopes that its conclusion brings some peace to both families involved, as well as the community,” Long Beach Police Chief Jim McDonnell stated in a press release.
The coroner’s office said Ramos died from blunt force trauma to the head.
“It was determined that after school, the two girls, and approximately seven onlookers, walked to a nearby alley to engage in a pre-planned fight,” according to authorities.
The fight only lasted about a minute and didn’t involve any weapons.
“She did not hit her head. The other girl just punched her in the face. She started bleeding from the nose,” according to Joanna’s witness and friend Maggie Martinez.
After the fight, Ramos complained of a headache and left an after-school program early, officials said.
The victim’s mother, Cecilia Villanueva, talked to CBS2 about the disturbing final moments of Ramos’ life.
“When I get there Joanna was laid down by the driveway, on the cement. I asked her what happened. She said, ‘I don’t feel good, mommy,’” Villanueva said. “The only thing she told me was, ‘A girl hit me in my head,’ and then she began vomiting more and more.”
Villanueva, who is a medical assistant, brought her daughter home, where she lost consciousness. She and her husband transported Ramos to the hospital and Villanueva performed CPR on her in the car.
Ramos wasn’t breathing and was unconscious when she was brought into an emergency room at approximately 5:50 p.m. Friday, police said.
Villanueva said doctors had to “bring her back to life” several times that night. Ramos underwent surgery, but, 10 minutes out of the procedure, at about 8:50 p.m., the 10-year-old’s heart stopped for the last time.
“There are times when words do not convey the sense of sadness and loss that we feel, and this is one of those times,” Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster said.