West Virginia mom charged with fatally shooting her 8-year-old daughter

Published: Sep. 22, 2018 at 3:12 PM EDT
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A mom has been charged with fatally shooting her 8-year-old daughter, according to WVSP.

It happened in Berkeley County Thursday afternoon.

Eliza Orellana, 8, was killed.

A criminal complaint filed in Berkeley County Magistrate Court details the incident began at a Tall Pine Lane home when Julie Orellana, 46, asked Eliza and her sister Olivia, 11, to go upstairs to find kittens stuck under a bed.

“Once inside the bedroom, Olivia Orellana stated her mother began firing a gun striking her in the leg and hitting her sister. Olivia Orellana stated she escaped the bedroom and leapt out an adjacent bedroom window to get help. During the intitial investigation it was discovered that Julie Orellana left the scene in a white Honda SUV, which was found abandoned on Cashew Lane. A search was conducted of 291 Tall Pine Lane where Eliza Orellana was discovered deceased on the living room floor from multiple stab wounds and gunshot wounds to the chest, abdomen, neck and back.” -Sgt. W.R. Garrett, WV State Police

In addition to a steak knife and 9 mm pistol, a six page letter was found on Orellana during her arrest detailing her plan. She intended to murder both daughters then take her own life.

Berkeley County Schools released a statement saying they are providing crisis counselors to schools near Gerrardstown.

“Families and school employees are encouraged to seek help provided by the crisis team should they feel the need. The loss of life and injury to a child is especially hard to understand, and as a school community, we are grieving. Our most sincere condolences are extended to this family and their friends. We thank local law enforcement for their quick response, and for the additional presence in our school communities both before and after the suspect was apprehended.” -Berkeley County Schools

Orellana has been charged with first degree murder and attempted murder in the first degree.

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