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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Crime/Public Safety

‘Long live Scarlet’: Vigil honors toddler found dead in Spokane apartment

UPDATED: Thu., July 15, 2021

Laura Green, top left, wraps her arms around daughter Lacey Stoddard, 11, center-right, Tuesday as Sarah Ruth, lower right, and Rhyllie Mulnix, left, in red,watch on during a vigil for a toddler who died July 3 at 3024 E. 30th Ave.  (Tyler Tjomsland/The Spokesman-Review)
Laura Green, top left, wraps her arms around daughter Lacey Stoddard, 11, center-right, Tuesday as Sarah Ruth, lower right, and Rhyllie Mulnix, left, in red,watch on during a vigil for a toddler who died July 3 at 3024 E. 30th Ave. (Tyler Tjomsland/The Spokesman-Review)

It was an intimate affair.

Neighbors at the Whispering Pines apartments and others who caught wind of the candlelight vigil gathered Tuesday night outside the mailboxes at the heart of the complex. There, two posters were decorated with pictures and messages in memoriam.

“Fly high, sweet angel,” one read.

“Long live Scarlet,” read another.

Scarlet is the 14-month-old girl found dead at around 4 p.m. July 3 at the South Hill apartment complex at 3024 E. 30th Ave.

Her mother called 911 using a neighbor’s phone, telling first responders that a dresser fell on the girl. Upon responding, investigators determined the toddler had been dead for hours, according to court documents.

The Spokane County Medical Examiner’s Office released Scarlet’s name Friday. Medical examiners have not yet listed the cause or manner of the child’s death.

Her 2-year-old sibling, who shared the room with Scarlet, has been taken into custody of Child Protective Services. Authorities have questioned the children’s 20-year-old mother and 25-year-old father.

Police are investigating Scarlet’s death as a homicide. Authorities are also looking into the overall care of the children as possible criminal mistreatment, according to a search warrant. No one has been arrested.

On Tuesday, Whispering Pines echoed with music for the candlelight vigil in Scarlet’s memory.

The small crowd of just over a dozen congregated in front of the display, where candles spelling out “love” were lit as the sun faded behind the buildings.

Rhyllie Mulnix, one of the vigil organizers, said she feels Scarlet’s death hasn’t gotten the attention it deserves.

“There’s three buildings that are full of families with children. None of us were made aware of it,” she said. “I feel like she should be remembered. The tragic way she lost her life should not be how the community remembers her on social media and things like that. She only got to live 14 months … her life should be celebrated.”

Mulnix, who has lived at Whispering Pines since 2018, said she didn’t know the family, but did see the children playing outside at times.

She said Scarlet’s death will forever leave an “emptiness” in the apartment complex.

“Whether you were close neighbors to her or across the way or right next door to them, it’s hitting everybody in this apartment complex really hard,” Mulnix said.

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