A 12-year-old Fresno boy has died of electrocution in a case police say is a tragic accident.
Adrian Antunez Perez died 2:17 p.m. Monday at Community Regional Medical Center, according a family friend.
His organs are being donated.
Police were called to Villa Margaritas apartments at 1235 N. Recreation Ave., near Olive and Chestnut avenues, just after 6 p.m. Thursday for a report of a boy stuck in an electrified fence, Lt. Stephen Viveros said. Police and paramedics found him unconscious between a cinder-block wall and a chain-link fence.
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Adrian and other children were throwing a football when it fell between the wall and fence, which are one to two feet apart. Adrian had gone to retrieve it, Viveros said.
Adrian jumped down between the two fences to get the ball when a jolt of electricity caused him to fall, Viveros said. He got up, fell again and became unconscious.
When police first tried to grab the boy, they received an electric shock, he said. They got him out and called PG&E to turn off power.
An investigation showed a bare wire had come into contact with a metal conduit that touched the fence. Viveros said the wire and conduit had recently been put there to power video surveillance cameras. “It’s just a tragic accident,” he said.
However, city officials said the wiring was improperly done.
City spokesman Mark Standriff said “there was illegal wiring to power some video surveillance cameras.” The wiring was installed without a permit or inspection, Standriff said. The city’s code enforcement division Monday issued a citation to the property manager, who must remove the wiring by Friday or face a fine.
The property is owned by JMY Properties LLC in Rolling Hills. Attempts to reach the company for comment were unsuccessful.
Adrian was a student at Scandinavian Middle School. Fresno Unified School District has psychologists and counselors available at Scandinavian and Ewing Elementary School, where Adrian’s siblings and other friends attend.
“We've been working close with the family and the school to provide information to parents and staff and to provide substitutes to teachers who are affected,” district spokeswoman Jessica Peres Baird said.
“He was very well loved,” Baird said. “A lot of people know his family.”
Karen Jones, a former teacher of Adrian’s mother Victoria, said as a small child Adrian was a happy, energetic, mischievious and smart child. She said a friend of Adrian’s told her, “Adrian just makes everything so much more fun.”
Diana Benate, 18, lives in the apartment building, and said Adrian was like a member of the family.
“He was such an active boy,” she said. “It’s hard for me to believe.”
She said she ran to Adrian when she heard he was in trouble behind the two fences.
“We were screaming ‘Adrian!’ ” she said. “He wouldn’t even answer us anymore.”
A candlelight vigil was planned for 7 Tuesday night in front Villa Margaritas Apartments, 1235 N. Recreation Ave.