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CNN LIVE EVENT/SPECIAL

7-Year-Old Found Dead in Swimming Pool

Aired June 4, 2002 - 15:35   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
CAROL LIN, CNN ANCHOR: Los Angeles police want to know how the body of a 7-year-old boy ended up in a swimming pool.

And here we go live to a news conference by the LAPD.

(JOINED IN PROGRESS)

DEPUTY CHIEF DAVID KALISH, LAPD: They collect water from the swimming pool. They look at the general area. And they gather information about what type of food was served, etcetera, because that information will be used during the autopsy tomorrow.

Tomorrow morning, the coroner's office will perform the autopsy. And they hopefully will then be able to determine the exact cause of death and perhaps the time. They will look at such issues as water in the lungs. They will look at the food contents of the stomach, all these types of issues. This evidence will help them determine the time and cause.

The investigation is continuing. Initially, originally, the original theory was that the child may have been placed back in the swimming pool. We simply don't know. We are looking at everything. We have ruled nothing out. At this time, again, the detectives are on the case. And we will probably be here throughout the day working this investigation. They are continuing to talk to people and they're continuing to look for any possible leads.

I don't have much more than that. I'm happy to answer any questions you might have.

QUESTION: What was he wearing?

KALISH: When he was found, he was wearing the same swim trunks that he was last seen in.

QUESTION: Is it possible he was in the pool all day (OFF-MIKE)

KALISH: You know, it's possible, but we just don't know.

We had all the people who were at the party there look in the pool. The police officers who responded looked in the swimming pool. The mother of the victim, who we talked to again today, looked in the swimming pool. The pool man was here yesterday. And he added chemicals to the pool. He didn't vacuum or sweep it, but he added chemicals to the pool and did some work on it. He did not see the child in the pool.

Is it possible that he was there since Sunday? It's possible, but we don't know. And we won't know until tomorrow, when the autopsy is completed. Hopefully, that will assist us in the investigation to determine, again, the cause of death, the approximate time of death, and, again, put all these pieces together to find out what happened in this tragedy.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) How deep is it, etcetera?

KALISH: It is a basic swimming pool. The water is fairly clear. It is in the center of the backyard. It is lower than the patio. Adjacent to that area is another building with rest rooms and facilities.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE)

KALISH: It's a normal blue swimming pool.

QUESTION: Commander, can you describe the circumstances of the party? Were there a lot of parents there? (OFF-MIKE)

KALISH: There were a number of people at the party. It was a birthday party. And it was children. There was entertainment for the children. It was your typical birthday party for a typical 7-year-old child.

(CROSSTALK)

QUESTION: Did the party take place down here as well by the fence?

KALISH: The party was actually on the property around the swimming pool and in the grassy area here on the property of this residence.

QUESTION: How many were there? Do you have the number (OFF- MIKE)

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE)

KALISH: That's another important aspect that -- we are still trying to determine what occurred.

As you know, we brought in a number of search dogs in immediately to search the area. And they aided us in the search. They picked up a scent that took them to this park and perhaps even further. We have found out since that time that the child was actually in the park earlier in the day with his parents. So is it -- could it have been a scent from earlier in the day? It is possible.

LIN: You are listening to Deputy Police Chief David Kalish, who simply doesn't have real concrete answers yet as to how this little boy, 7-year-old Paolo Ayala, ended up back in that pool, apparently, possibly drowned, possibly murdered. Originally, he had said that the body might have been placed there after the police were searching for the little boy, who disappeared from a pool party Sunday afternoon. But now he is beginning to back off from that theory.

So the body has been delivered to the coroner, who will perform several tests to find out how the boy died and when the boy died. We will have much more on that, especially tomorrow, when we expect to hear the coroner's results.

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