- Associated Press - Monday, May 9, 2016

WINSLOW, Ariz. (AP) - A 17-year-old Navajo girl died after intentionally unclipping herself from a zip line and dropping 50 feet into a creek during a high school ROTC exercise in northeastern Arizona, authorities said.

Marisa Trujillo of the Chinle area fell into the creek north of Interstate 40 west of Winslow on Saturday, Navajo County sheriff’s Chief Deputy James Molesa said.

An autopsy will determine cause of death.

Other students have intentionally dropped into the creek in previous years, Molesa said. Trujillo had said she planned to unclip herself and didn’t heed calls from others not to, he added.

A safety diver in the creek was unable to find Trujillo in the murky water, Molesa said. Divers later found Trujillo’s body 15 to 20 feet beneath the water.

Chinle Unified School District Superintendent Quincy Natay said there were 25 other students present when the teen dropped into the water. The district was making counselors available for students and staff Monday.

“Our hearts go out to the family and friends,” Natay said in a statement. “Please keep them all in your thoughts.”

ROTC exercises have been suspended and activities will be under review.

Natay said he could not recall an incident like this in the school’s history. He also disputed that students in previous years made similar drops into the creek.



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