St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s deputies with the Special Operation Division recovered the body of 10 year old, Avani Cook, at approximately 730 this evening. The young girl was located in a near – by pond.
The preliminary investigation indicates, for unknown reasons, the 10 year old walked to the area of the pond and entered it before drowning. The St. Tammany Parish Coroner’s Office responded to the scene and is conducting an investigation, along with Investigators of the Major Crimes Division, into the circumstances surrounding the drowning. At this time, there is no evidence to indicate that this tragic incident is anything other than that.
“This is a horrible tragedy and my sincere condolences and sympathy goes to the family of the young girl lost, and for everyone who was involved with doing all they could to locate her safely. Unfortunately, that was not the case, and the loss of a young precious life affects our entire community. We will all continue to pray that God provides comfort for the family,” Sheriff Randy Smith said in response to the tragic drowning.
St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s deputies are currently searching a heavily wooded area north of Covington looking for a 10-year-old special needs child, who went missing while playing outside her home in the 25000 block of North Davis Road.
Avani Cook, a white female, who is approximately 4 foot tall and 70 pounds, was playing outside her residence with her mother and dog. Her mother stepped inside for a moment and when she returned, the dog was there but the child was missing. She called 911 shortly after 2:30 p.m. to report the child missing.
The girl is described as having dirty blonde hair and hazel eyes. She is non-verbal and suffers from medical conditions that may inhibit her ability to get around.
STPSO K9 deputies are on scene assisting with the search along with more than 15 deputies on foot and ATV.
Anyone who may see the child in the area, is asked to contact the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office by calling 911 or (985) 898-2338 immediately.