4-year-old dies in accidental hanging in Mankato

MANKATO, Minn. (KARE) A 4-year-old boy died following an accident at a Mankato thrift store according to police in Mankato.

The incident happened Saturday after first responders were called to the Again Thrift & More operated by Minnesota Valley Action Council located at 706 North Victory Drive around 5:40 p.m. Ryu Pena was found unresponsive in a dressing room.

Mankato officials say it appears the boy suffocated after his hoodie got caught in a clothing hook.

KARE 11's Camille Williams spoke to Denise Gonzalez, Ryu's mother, who said that the little boy was shopping with his grandmother at the time of the accident. The boy was taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.

"It wasn't neglect. He was having fun. He was playing. He was being a kid. It could happen to anybody at any time," Gonzalez said. "We just borrowed him for a little while and got to know him. He got to touch a lot of people. He was a star."

Foul play is not suspected but the investigation is still ongoing.

A GoFundMe page has been set up by family members to cover funeral expenses.

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