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FAIRFIELD (CBS13) – Friends and family are struggling to make sense of a young girl’s death as detectives continue to search for her killer.
The memorial for the 13-year-old Suisun City girl continues to grow, with people writing messages and even leaving teddy bears and flowers.
“She was just a young girl. Her life was just beginning,” a relative said. “She was loved. We loved her.”
Friends on Monday identified the victim as Genelle Allen. Fairfield Police confirmed the victim as Genelle Renee Conway-Allen.
Her body was found naked, dumped as if it were a piece of trash in Allan Witt Park on Friday morning. Police released a a surveillance photo of her at the intersection of E. Tabor Avenue and Grande Circle in Fairfield minutes before Genelle was last seen late Thursday afternoon. She was last seen wearing a gray sweater, blue jean-style leggings and a pink backpack.
Detectives are chasing leads, following up on several tips and reviewing surveillance footage.
“Our family has gone through a tragedy, hell,” a great aunt said.
Genelle’s great aunt didn’t want to be on camera, but she wanted to talk about the girl with the big blue eyes.
“I want people to know she was a loving child,” she said. “She went through a lot in her life and she was always with a smile.”
Friends at Fairfield’s Green Valley Middle School say they’ve had counselors on hand to help them through the pain. Many say they spent the whole day Monday in the library just talking about Genelle and writing messages on posters in honor of her memory.
“She was like really friendly and really open with her feelings and everything, but she would always be honest about what she said,” Shavanna Alvarez said.
“She was very creative. She liked to sing. She was very open. You would want to tell all your secrets to her, like you could trust her,” Jenell Lindsey said.
Now they’re all coming together talking about their close friend and asking one simple question.
“For somebody that you know really well and then you see her on Thursday and then the next day you find out that she died, it’s kind of hard for a person to get over it that fast,” friend William Jackson said.
And so as detectives tell us they are working around the clock to find who did this, people in the community say they won’t be able to rest until the killer is behind bars.
“This person can’t just get away with what they’ve done,” Michelle Jackson said. “You take a baby and you just dump her as if she was a piece of garbage, and she wasn’t. She was a human being.”
The family plans on having a memorial for Genelle in Allan Witt Park at 6:30 on Friday night.
Anyone with information on what happened to Genelle is asked to call the Fairfield Police Department Major Crimes Unit 24-hour Tip Line at (707) 428-7345. Callers can remain anonymous.