Read as much as you want on BostonGlobe.com, anywhere and anytime, for just 99¢.

Bruins Live

1

0

2nd Prd 9:46

Boy’s arrest in sister’s death stuns Calif. town

VALLEY SPRINGS, Calif. — A day before a 12-year-old boy was arrested for the stabbing death of his 8-year-old sister, his mother described him as ‘‘protective’’ of his younger sibling.

Leila Fowler’s killing last month shook the quiet community of Valley Springs, southeast of Sacramento, and set off an intense manhunt. Her brother was in the home at the time and told police he saw a man run from the scene.

Continue reading below

Days later, the boy was with his father and stepmother at a vigil for his sister. On Friday, as speculation built that the boy was involved, his biological mother told Sacramento television station KOVR her son ‘‘could never hurt his sister.’’

‘‘I’ve never seen him be mean to her,’’ said Priscilla Rodriquez.

A day later, police delivered stunning news: The 12-year-old boy had been arrested and will be charged with homicide.

For a community still reeling from the killing, the news was another blow.

‘‘It’s bad enough to lose a child. I can’t imagine losing a child by one of my own children,’’ said Patti Campbell, a longtime area resident and owner of Campbell’s Kitchen.

Loading comments...

You have reached the limit of 10 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week