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Calif. Town Locked Down After Girl, 8, Murdered

Police searched door-to-door for Leila Fowler's killer
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 29, 2013 6:31 AM CDT
Calif. Town Locked Down After Girl, 8, Murdered
Map locates Valley Springs, Ca.   (AP)

(Newser) – A tiny Northern California town was shut down over the weekend amid a manhunt for the murderer of an 8-year-old. Residents of Valley Springs—population 2,500—were told to lock their doors and watch for a man accused of stabbing Leila Fowler on Saturday afternoon, the AP reports. Police went door-to-door as they searched sheds and attics for the man. "This kind of thing does not happen here," a local mother told the Modesto Bee.

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Leila's brother, age 12, reportedly crossed paths with the man—described as white or Latino and wearing a black shirt and blue pants—in his house; after the attacker ran away, the boy found his sister. She was pronounced dead at a local hospital. Investigators reportedly found fingerprints and DNA in the girl's home, though it'll take as long as a week to get the results. Area schools are open today, notes Fox40. (Read more California stories.)

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