Police seek tips in mysterious death of child in Chickasaw Park

The 12-year-old died from blunt force trauma. But police need help piecing together what happened. (Source: LMPD)
The 12-year-old died from blunt force trauma. But police need help piecing together what happened. (Source: LMPD)
This memorial sits in the park as her family pleads for information. (Source: WAVE 3 News)
This memorial sits in the park as her family pleads for information. (Source: WAVE 3 News)

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - This week, 12-year-old Laraya Hill would have been starting the 7th grade, but instead of buying school supplies, her family is trying to figure out how she died.

Hill was found unresponsive in Chickasaw Park on May 21. She died at the hospital from blunt force trauma.

Officials believe she could have been hit by a car, but no one has come forward.

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Police pushed the community for information Friday, adding the homicide unit is now looking into the case to provide a fresh perspective.

"People want help," Neal Robertson, a friend of the Hill family who organized a fundraiser to cover Laraya's funeral costs, said. "People want answers."

The weather has gotten to a teddy bear and the cloth flowers have faded on a makeshift memorial at Chickasaw Park, but one thing hasn't changed.

"The sad part is somebody knew what happened and nobody is stepping up," Robertson said.

Now, police are asking anyone who may know something to come forward, hoping to renew momentum on a case with few answers.

"The witnesses were random and anonymous," Lt. Micah Scheu, a member of the LMPD Traffic Unit, said. "We would like to talk to them a little bit more."

Police said Hill's injury could be consistent with being struck by a vehicle or falling off of a moving one, but said they still need more evidence.

"Perhaps this wasn't a vehicle incident, maybe this was something else," Lt. Emily McKinley, an LMPD homicide detective on the case, said.

Investigators said it could've been an accident, but wanted to show the public pictures sent by Hill's mother as she searches for answers.

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"She said that she couldn't pick just one, and neither could I after looking at her," McKinley said. "I figured that everyone should see all seven pictures that her mother wished to share with everyone -- asking for answers on her daughter's death."

Closure, police said, for possibly a driver who is living knowing the effects of that May night, but more importantly, for a family who has lost a little girl they still think about everyday.

"That's hurting her mom, that's hurting her grandmother," Robertson said. "I could hear it in their voice when I talked to her."

Police said there was no evidence of vehicle parts at scene.

Anyone with information on this case should call the LMPD anonymous tipline at 502-562-LMPD (5673).

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