Homicide detectives are investigating the death of a boy with autism who was found dead in a public pool
The body of Zavire Dion Portis, 9, was discovered in a pool in a 55-acre Inglewood park at 9.30pm on Sunday, after he wandered away from his mother’s car just before 4pm, police said.
Lieutenant Neal Cochran claimed the boy’s mother got out of the car to get water from the fountain, and when she returned, the boy’s two siblings told her he had wandered off.
The body of Zavire Dion Portis, 9, (pictured), was discovered in a pool in a 55-acre Inglewood park at 9.30pm hours after he wandered away from his mother’s car just before 4 pm Sunday
Local children from the neighborhood reportedly went to Inglewood Park pool for a swim when they discovered the young boy’s body and pulled him from the water
Authorities began searching Edward Vincent Jr Park in the 700 block of E. Warren Lane after urging the public for help in searching for Zavire, who was non-verbal. The tragedy occurred at Inglewood Park Pool.
Police had used a K9 and a helicopter to search the area but were unable to find the boy.
At around 9.30 pm Sunday, park patrons told officers that a child’s body was in the pool. Officers recovered the body and Zavire was identified by family members.
The child’s father Zedric Portis, (pictured), said that his son was in foster care, and was visiting his mother at the park when the tragedy occurred
At around 9.30 pm Sunday, park patrons told officers that a child’s body was in the pool. Officers recovered the body and it was identified by family members
The children told officers they got in to the water and pulled his body to the surface, but he was dead already.
They were not able to provide investigators with information as they are also special needs children,
The child’s father Zedric Portis said that his son was in foster care, and was visiting his mother at the park when the tragedy occurred.
He told NBC Los Angeles: ‘It’s hard for me to accept it, I cant believe it, you cant even get in there. He was nine-years-old.
‘He was nice, kind,he had a good spirit, he couldn’t talk but I learned to communicate with him and everything else.’
Relatives question how the boy got into the pool if it was closed as he could not have climbed a seven-foot fence by himself
Police had used a K9 and a helicopter to search the area but were unable to find the boy
Cops said the drowning was likely an accident, but they were going to investigate all possible avenues.
Inglewood homicide detectives have assumed control of the investigation, police confirmed.
‘On behalf of the City of Inglewood, I give condolences and prayers to the family of Zavire Dion Portis, a 9-year old child who died in an accidental drowning yesterday at Edward Vincent Park,’ Inglewood Mayor James T. Butts said in a statement.
Relatives visited the park on Tuesday and said they were searching for answers as to how the boy accessed the pool area which would have been locked at the time.
The claimed that he could not have climbed a 7-foot-tall iron fence by himself. Relatives also told the outlet they had last saw Zavire with his mother about one month ago.
Zavire’s aunt Kim Portis said: ‘I just want to know how did he get in there. How did he get in there? We went around this whole pool. Everything is locked up. How did he climb over that gate?.’