Local News

Brother, Sister Drown In Harnett County Pond

Posted June 12, 2003

— Authorities said two children drowned Tuesday in a small pond near a Harnett County home.

When EMS and deputies arrived at 745 Dunrovin Lane around noon Tuesday, family members were attempting to revive 5-year-old Tesse Costilla and 4-year-old Jovan Gonzalez.

The siblings were transported to Central Carolina Hospital in Sanford, where they died later.

Family members said they thought the children may have wandered by a nearby pond to pick blackberries. Even with their mother, 30-year-old April Costilla, close by, authorities say the children may have been underwater for a hour.

"She was at a house near there and had observed the kids in the area, but other than that, we are still conducting interviews," Sherrif Larry Rollins said. "These kids were 4 and 5 years old and even in a bathtub -- it could be dangerous if not supervised. Kids around water is not a good mix."

Authorities said the children's grandfather found them and removed them from the water. Authorities said the pond, about four feet deep, is about 100 yards from the home of Costilla's boyfriend.

After Costilla found out about her children's death, she was taken to the hospital with breathing problems.

The sheriff plans to take evidence and present it to the district attorney who will decide whether to press criminal charges.


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