5-year-old girl dies while playing on school monkey bars

A 5-year-old girl playing on the playground at a Covington elementary school died from asphyxiation, according to an autopsy report.

Police told Channel 2 Action News that Andrea Tyrah Debruhl was playing on the monkey bars at school Monday afternoon when she somehow slipped and asphyxiated.

The school district officials told Action News that 10 teachers and paraprofessionals were supervising the playground when they found Andrea. Other children were playing nearby when the accident happened.

Parents, grandparents and the Covington community are in shock over the tragic loss of the kindergartner. Counselors will be in place at the school for as long as needed to provide support to anyone emotionally affected by the little girl’s death.

Parent Jennifer New told Channel 2 that the incident will make her more aware. “You think playgrounds are safe for kids,” New said. “You wouldn’t think monkey bars would be a cause.”

Newton County Coroner Tommy Davis said the death has been ruled accidental, but the investigation is not over. They are now trying to determine how the child got in the position she was in on the monkey bars, he said.

Police told Channel 2 they don’t anticipate any criminal charges in this case, but it will be up to the district attorney.