9-year-old found dead in her home, California cops say. Mom arrested while shopping

A welfare check led to the discovery of a dead 9-year-old girl, California police said.

One of the girl’s family members was worried and called police on Nov. 24, according to a Nov. 25 news release by the Westminster Police Department.

Officers made their way inside and found the 9-year-old dead with “obvious signs of trauma,” police said.

Police didn’t specify the girl’s cause of death.

There wasn’t anyone else inside the house, officials said.

Detectives took over the investigation and named the girl’s mother, Khadiyjah Pendergraph, a person of interest, police said.

The 32-year-old mother was arrested in Aliso Viejo while at a shopping center, officials said.

“While police officers are exposed to tragedies on a daily basis, this murder is particularly disturbing due to the senseless loss of a child allegedly at the hands of her own mother,” Westminster Chief of Police Darin Lenyi said in the release. “The members of the WPD grieve with the victim’s family and extend our deepest condolences.”

McClatchy News reached out to the Westminster Police Department on Nov. 27 for more information and did not receive an immediate response.

She was booked into the Orange County Jail on a murder charge, officials said.

Anyone with information is asked to call 714-548-3773, the release said.

Westminster is about 30 miles southeast of Los Angeles.

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