Heartache as toddler who died after being found in a pond near home is named

A two-year-old girl, who police believe may have been murdered after she was found in a pond near her home, has now been named.

Annabel Mackey was reported missing from her home in Kingsley, Hampshire just after 5pm on Sunday before she was found 10 minutes later “unresponsive” in the pond. 

Local residents described the girl as a “beautiful” and “gorgeous” toddler who lived with her parents Peter, 39, and Alice, 40.

Annabel sadly died on Monday night and a woman in her 40s has since been arrested on suspicion of murder. 

The Telegraph reports witnesses heard an adult shouting “help me, help me” at the pond and then described the casualty being put into an ambulance, covered in blankets.

A friend living close to the family home said: “Whenever we saw her in the village she didn’t really speak, she gave us little smiles. She was a sweet little girl. She was very, very quiet and shy. Timid I would say.”

A man who lives on the same road as Annabel describes how the little girl and had her family would often visit during occasions such as Halloween. He explained how he would often see the family enjoying walks in the common. The man said it was “terrible” for someone that young to lose their life.

He said: “Alice would always be holding her hand and quite often they’d walk up the Common because it’s a beautiful place to walk.”

He added: “At Halloween, we get a lot of decorations around the house for our little one and Annabel used to come in and look at the decorations. She was gorgeous, she was a beautiful little girl.”

The neighbour explained his own family had moved to Kingsley because it was an “idyllic” neighbourhood and described the tragedy as a “shocker” with police swarming the village after the incident. 

The village and pond is a popular fishing spot, and many dog walkers stroll around the area, which is a quiet location and home to around 600 people.

A vigil for Annabel Mackey was held on Tuesday night and floral tributes were left throughout the day by locals at the village’s pond including one which read: “RIP little one, gone well too soon, taken to heaven now, sleep tight little one.”

Hampshire Police is continuing to appeal for information over Annabel’s death and has urged witnesses to come forward.

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