Troopers identify body found near Big Lake Elementary as 16-year-old, call death suspicious
BIG LAKE, Alaska (KTUU) - Alaska State Troopers identified the body found Tuesday near Big Lake Elementary School as that of 16-year-old Devin White of Big Lake.
Troopers said that there were no “obvious signs of injuries or trauma,” but that evidence at the scene makes the death suspicious in nature.
Troopers initially responded to reports of a body found near the school playgrounds Tuesday at 10:53 a.m., putting the school in “stay-put” mode. Students were kept inside and resumed classes, and were released at the end of the day.
There was no known connection between White and the elementary school, according to troopers’ initial reports.
On Wednesday, the Matanuska-Susitna Borough School District confirmed that White was a Houston Junior Senior High School student. Families of students attending the school were notified on Tuesday, and students were told on Wednesday.
“Houston Jr./Sr. High School learned yesterday that a student passed away,” the district said in a statement. “Consistent with our established procedures we informed our school families of the student’s passing to ensure the necessary counseling supports were available for individuals during the school day. The District has no further information to share with the public about this situation, our priority will be supporting students and staff as needed. Our thoughts are with the family in their time of grief.”
The cause of death will be investigated by the Alaska State Medical Examiner’s Office, according to troopers, who also asked the public to submit any tips relating to the case by calling 907-352-5401. Tips can also be sent through the AKTips smartphone app, texting AKTIPS to 847411 followed by your information, or online here.
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