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Vigil held for 12-year-old dead of apparent suicide

Posted at 4:15 PM, Jan 28, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-28 16:15:19-05

WASHINGTON (WJLA/CNN) – A devastated family is demanding police reopen the investigation into the death of a young girl.

Twelve-year-old Stormiyah Denson-Jackson was found dead at the Seed Public Charter School of Washington, D.C.

Police said it was a suicide, but her family doesn’t believe it.

"She had everything to live for,” said Tyronne Jackson, Stormiyah’s father. “She loved life. She was life. She is my life, you know? And it's killing me."

Jackson is in search of answers. Emotionally spent, he pleaded with the media to change the storyline surrounding his daughter.

"I know for a fact my baby wouldn't do anything like that to herself," Jackson said.

According to D.C. police, the 12-year-old was found dead in her dormitory at Seed Public Charter School on Jan. 23.

Authorities determined suicide as the cause of death, but Jackson and his family find that hard to believe.

"Why would she commit suicide, if she is a faithful member of Emmanuel Baptist Church?” Jackson said. “She lives by the Bible. My baby lives by the Bible."

The family held a vigil Saturday. Hundreds marched, lit candles and sang as they celebrated a life gone far too soon.

The love and support for Stormiyah was undeniable, but schoolmates say she was often bullied as a student. They point to the abuse as a possible reason for her death.

Jackson suspects foul play and wants the investigation reopened.

"I know this is no suicide,” Jackson said. “Clear my baby's name. Clear my baby's name!"

After the story broke of Stormiyah Denson-Jackson’s death, other parents of Seed Public Charter School students have come forward to talk about their children’s experiences.

At a meeting between parents and school officials, several reported their kids were bullied at the school.

Copyright 2018 WJLA via CNN. All rights reserved.