Toddler dies in Saugus accident

SAUGUS – A two-year-old girl who was with her mother in a busy street was killed in Saugus’ Cliftondale Square yesterday, stunning veteran cops and onlookers alike.

“This is a tragedy for the family, and the entire community, as well,” said Saugus Assistant Police Chief Leonard Campanello.“It involves a juvenile, and a lot of emotions are running really high right now,” Campanello said. “Our investigation is ongoing, and very preliminary.”

Campanello said the Saugus police received a number of 911 calls at 2:01 p.m., but he refused to release details of what happened to the little girl.

“There was an accident involving a child, and possibly involving a motor vehicle as well,” he said.

The little girl’s name was not released. Police would not say whether anyone would be facing charges in the girl’s death.

The child was transported to Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, where she was pronounced dead at 2:53 p.m., Campanello said.

For the next several hours, as horrified onlookers gathered and fought back tears, Saugus police and state troopers surveyed the accident scene.

They had roped off a pickup truck and two passenger cars, all parked along Essex Street. The scene was near a bank and about 15 yards from the entrance to a Brazilian church.

Bystanders at the accident scene said the little girl was getting into a car with her mother, but it was unclear exactly how she was injured.

They said people associated with the church were frantic after the accident, but it was unclear whether the woman and her child belonged to the church.

The mother was transported by ambulance with her daughter, but it was unclear whether the mother was injured.

“The people at the church were all hysterical,” said Chris Rose, 31, of Saugus, who said he arrived at the horrific scene moments after the rescue crews showed up.