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Officers respond to Riverside Elementary, attempted hanging

A 13-year-old female Pine River student attempted to hang herself in the bathroom at Riverside Elementary School Thursday night, the Brainerd Police Department confirmed.

Police cars and an ambulance sit outside Riverside School in Brainerd Thursday night. (Kelly Humphrey, Brainerd Dispatch)
Police cars and an ambulance sit outside Riverside School in Brainerd Thursday night. (Kelly Humphrey, Brainerd Dispatch)

A 13-year-old female Pine River student attempted to hang herself in the bathroom at Riverside Elementary School Thursday night, the Brainerd Police Department confirmed.

Numerous law enforcement squad cars and a North Memorial Ambulance were seen about 7:50 p.m. Thursday outside the school, which is just off Washington Street in Brainerd. First Responders performed CPR on the teenager and transported her to Essentia Health St. Joseph's Medical Center for further treatment.

According to a press release by Brainerd Police Chief Corky McQuiston, officers arrived to find others on scene before first responders arrived involved in life saving efforts after she was found in the bathroom unresponsive. Upon arrival, First Responders took over life saving efforts. She was transported to Essentia Health St. Joseph's Medical Center in Brainerd, and later transferred to a twin-cities area hospital where she continues to receive treatment. Information from police correspondence indicated no updates in condition.

Pine River-Backus School District Superintendent Cathy Bettino said she was contacted immediately following the incident.

"The Brainerd School District called me almost immediately last night. Thanks to the good work down there we were at the front end of the loop for what happened down there," Bettino said. "We gathered some of our school leaders last night and met immediately in the morning to make sure the people that needed to know what was going on last night knew, and so that we would have the support for student and staff in place as this unfolded."

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The Pine River-Backus School District is working to provide support to students during the hard time following the incident.

"We're in a mode of keeping an eye open," Bettino said. "The nice thing about a small school is that we know who is involved, and a lot of the relationships and connections and we know what's going on with the kids. At this point we're keeping an eye out with trusting adults in place to provide support when it needs to be provided. "

There was a freshman volleyball game going on at the time at Riverside and the teenager was reported to be there to watch the game.

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