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UPDATE: Autopsy complete on Hancock Middle School student who died

An autopsy has been completed in the case of a Kiln girl who died today, but results are not yet being released and there is no confirmation of reports the child died after suffering flu-related symptoms.

The name of the 13-year-old girl, who died earlier today, also was not released. Hancock County Coroner Norma Stiglet did confirm the victim had been a student at Hancock Middle School.

Results of the medical examination are being withheld, “pending further investigation and lab tests,” Stiglet said. It was not made public whether or not the death could be related to the H1N1 virus, also known as swine flu.

The Mississippi Department of Health reports that 499 cases of swine flu have occurred statewide. A 7-year-old child died of the disease in Jackson County earlier this month, and several colleges and universities are reporting bouts of the flu on their campuses.

Hancock County Superintendent of Schools Alan Dedeaux also confirmed the local girl who died was a student at Hancock Middle School, but declined to say whether she had previously been absent from school because of illness. He said the school system did not have enough concrete facts on the case to comment.

However, Dedeaux said reports that parents had been pulling their children out of the middle school Thursday, after hearing reports of the death, were not accurate. “That has not happened,” he said.

Read more about this story in Friday's Sun Herald.

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