The medical examiner was unable to determine whether a 5-year-old child's death was an accident or murder. Monique, known as Monet, Fulgham had been found in her family's Bronx apartment closet Sunday afternoon, strangled by a jump rope. Newsday says that one end of the rope was "secured to the top of a closet door." It does not seem that her grandmother, who found her, or her mother were present during her death.
However, the police have so far denied that the child was raped, which is contrary to the Daily News' report yesterday. The News had mentioned that a police source said she had been raped; the Post had also mentioned Monet may have been sexually abused. Neighbors were angry about the accusations, which they felt cast a negative light on Monet's family. A neighbor, Tamaira Capehart, told the Times, "I don’t think, I know [her death was an accident]. Monet was an active child that you had to keep an eye on.” Another told the Sun, "Somebody should clear this, she died from asphyxiation," and added that Monet's mother was a good woman.
Police believe that Monet may have tried to create a trapeze to swing on. The Administration for Children's Services says that they are investigating.