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RCMP apologize to Indigenous teen's mom for 'miscommunication' about death investigation


The mother of a 15-year-old girl who died in Duncan, B.C. last week says the RCMP have apologized for how the investigation was initially handled.

Marie Seaweed, says she received a call from The North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP Friday morning saying there a “miscommunication” on its end. That call came after an initial statement about her daughter Carsyn's death in which the detachment said it was not suspicious.

"When I first seen the initial report of it not being suspicious it was overwhelming,” Seaweed told CTV News.

“I felt like it wasn't fair, my daughter deserved justice,” she continued. “I was so glad that many people were the voice with me to change that.”

The detachment said Thursday that the girl was found in a "semi-conscious state” in the south end of the city off the Trans Canada Highway on May 15.

She was taken to hospital but later died and Mounties said criminality was not suspected in the death.

However Friday, Mounties issued a new statement saying the teenager was found “in a semi-conscious state under suspicious circumstance.”

Carsyn's says mom says police have now assured her the investigation is a top priority.

She says the last week has been extremely difficult.

“It feels like my heart has been broken into a million pieces,” Marie said.

“We always called each other each other's best friends, she took a huge part of me with her when she left.”

Police say they will not be releasing any more information to protect the integrity of the investigation.

On Thursday, Cowichan Tribes said it was sending its condolences to family members of a "15-year-old youth with ties to Cowichan who passed away last week."

The nation is encouraging anyone with information to contact the RCMP and that seeing to the safety of vulnerable members is a priority for the chief and council.

"Too many of our community members have experienced the unspeakable loss of a family member at a young age," Chief Lydia Hwitsum said in a statement. "We need to work together community-wide to combat crime and demand safety by reporting any and all suspicious activities to the RCMP."

Mounties are also encouraging community members to be cautious about rumours and online speculation surrounding the girl's death.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP at 250-748-5522.

With files from CTV Vancouver Island’s Adam Chan Top Stories

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