'Rest easy princess': Tributes to 10-year-old girl found dead as 'laughing' woman, 33, arrested

5 March 2024, 15:04 | Updated: 5 March 2024, 16:45

A 10-year-old girl who was found dead near Birmingham has been pictured for the first time.
A 10-year-old girl who was found dead near Birmingham has been pictured for the first time. Picture: Alamy/West Midlands Police/LBC

By Jenny Medlicott

Tributes have poured in for a 'bright and fun-loving' 10-year-old girl after she was found dead in Rowley Regis, near Birmingham.

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Shay Kang, 10, was found dead in a home in Robin Close in the West Midlands town just after midday on Monday.

She has now been pictured for the first time as tributes pour in for the schoolgirl, with neighbours placing flowers, cuddly toys and cards near her home.

One card read "You will be soo missed by everyone, rest easy princess" while another said "Shay you will be forever missed and always in our thoughts."

Paying tribute to the young girl, Brickhouse Primary School, where she attended, said in a statement: “Our school is deeply saddened by the tragic death of one of our children. 

“Shay was a bright, happy, fun-loving child who was well liked by all, and she will be very sadly missed by everyone. 

“School is the heart of the community and we have already begun working with our children and staff to support them following this devastating news."

The headteacher also said: “This is obviously going to be a really difficult time for the children and the local community, as we all come to terms with this devastating news.

“I know we are all devastated by this news but I know we will get through this difficult time together.”

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The girl was named locally as Shay Kang.
The girl was named locally as Shay Kang. Picture: Handout
Local residents released balloons in tribute to the young girl on Tuesday.
Local residents released balloons in tribute to the young girl on Tuesday. Picture: LBC

Local residents gathered at the estate on Tuesday as the released balloons in tribute to the young girl.

The schoolgirl had reportedly been in care until just days before her death, local residents claimed.

She had been spotted playing with other kids on the estate on Sunday evening just hours before police were called to the property.

Teachers at her primary school carried out a welfare check when Shay failed to register at school, according to reports.

A neighbour of the girl, who wished to remain anonymous, said: "You just don't think anything like this is going to happen on your doorstep.

"It's just absolutely heartbreaking what has happened."

One local on the Brickhouse Estate wrote on Facebook: “People who live nearby, who saw the arrest go down, saw her laughing as she was arrested.”

Neighbours said the 10-year-old lived at the address with her mother and was often playing in the road with other local children.

"She was a happy little girl," one local resident said. "She used to play with other children on a mattress or a settee. It's absolutely awful news that she has died."

One parent who lives three doors down told The Mirror: “I had seen the little girl out playing last week.

"She seemed a bit shy but just a normal kid. My neighbours say they hadn’t seen her since before the weekend. Lots of people are saying she could have been dead for two days in the house before she was found.”

Tributes were left at her home.
Tributes were left at her home. Picture: Alamy

A GoFundMe page has since been set up by local residents to pay for the 10-year-old’s funeral.

The page reads: “As you maybe aware she had no family except her mum.

“The purpose of this is to come together as a community to help raise funds for her funeral and to also help with flowers, head stone etc.

“She didn’t deserve this at all and the best we can do is make sure she flys high in the most beautiful way.”

A 33-year-old woman, who knew the girl, was arrested on suspicion of murder and taken for questioning on Monday.

Police continue to investigate the death.

Detective Inspector Dan Jarratt said: "A young girl has tragically lost her life and our thoughts are with her loved ones and all those impacted by this terrible passing.

"We know how shocking and distressing this will be for the community and we'll continue to have a police presence and offer our support in the area over the coming days.

"A suspect has been arrested and detectives are fully investigating the circumstances around this sad death."

Rowley Regis is a town of 50,000 people in the metropolitan borough of Sandwell. It is part of the Black Country built up area immediately west of Birmingham.

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