The body of a 5-year-old California girl was found Wednesday afternoon after she slipped and fell Sunday into the fast-moving Stanislaus River in Knights Ferry and disappeared.
Update 10:45 p.m. EDT March 20: Volunteers searching the area found Matilda Ortiz around 4:45 p.m. local time, the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department said, and her family has identified her remains.
Authorities had begun to reduce the flow of the river in an effort at finding the little girl, who was with her father when she slipped on rocks and tumbled into the turbulent waters.
Original story: According to the Los Angeles Times, the girl's father and other witnesses tried to save the 5-year-old when she plunged into the Stanislaus River about 5 p.m. Sunday, the Stanislaus County Sheriff's Department said.
“Her father went and jumped in the water after her, but because of the water current and how cold it is – it’s really high this time of year – he started struggling, and he was not able to reach his daughter,” department spokesman Royjindar Singh told reporters.
Crews used boats and a helicopter to look for the girl, who has not been publicly identified, before halting the search Sunday night, the Times reported. Authorities will start searching again Monday morning.
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