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Northern California girl who was fatally stabbed is identified

Authorities on Sunday identified the 8-year-old girl found stabbed to death in her Calaveras County home and said a manhunt was continuing for a suspect who reportedly was spotted fleeing the rural crime scene.

Leila Fowler was found in her Valley Springs home Saturday afternoon and pronounced dead at a hospital. Her 12-year-old brother had called for help, saying said he'd encountered a male intruder in the house. (The girl, a third-grader, was previously said to be 9 years old.)

Multiple law enforcement agencies are still searching for a suspect described as a white or Latino man, about 6 feet tall with a muscular build, last seen wearing a black long-sleeved shirt and blue pants.

Authorities were conducting a door-to-door sweep of homes, checking storage sheds and horse stables and searching attics. “It is a difficult area to search. It's rural, remote,” sheriff's Capt. Jim Macedo told the Associated Press.

Leila attended Jenny Lind Elementary in Valley Springs. Parents of other students there told Sacramento-area television station KCRA that she was one of seven children in her family. Grief counselors will be at the school Monday.

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larry.gordon@latimes.com

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