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                     CARMELA DELA ROSA

 

McLEAN, Virginia — A 50-year-old Fil-Am grandmother threw her 2 1/2 years old granddaughter several stories to her death from a walkway at a shopping mall after a family outing, police said on Tuesday.

Carmela Dela Rosa, of Ellenwood Drive in Fairfax, was arrested and charged on Tuesday with murder, said prosecutor Ian Rodway, the chief deputy Commonwealth’s attorney.

She is currently being held without bond at the Fairfax County Adult Detention Center.

The child, Angelyn Ogdoc, died in a hospital after plunging about 50 feet to the pavement on Monday night at around 7:30 p.m.

She fell from a walkway linking the mall’s third floor to the parking garage’s sixth floor at Tysons Corner Center in Fairfax, a Washington suburb in Virginia.

 

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                        ANGELYN OGDOC

 

Investigators believe Dela Rosa threw the child over a railing but do not yet know why, Fairfax County police spokeswoman Tawny Wright said.

Wright said the toddler and Dela Rosa were leaving the mall with family at the time when she picked up and threw the girl off the walkway in a matter of seconds, Wright says.

A preliminary hearing in the case was set for Jan. 4, Rodway said.

A public defender will be assigned to the case.

One of Dela Rosa’s neighbors, Russell Jackson, described them as “a happy family” and said Dela Rosa lived with her husband and a son, but that their daughter and granddaughter were frequently at the home.

Jackson, who lives in a row house directly next door to the family, said the grandparents would often take care of the young girl.

“She was a sweet, happy baby,” he told the Associated Press, adding that Dela Rosa and her grandchild could often be seen in the window of the home, waving to passers-by.

No one answered the door on Tuesday at Angelyn’s two-story home in Falls Church, about seven miles from the home of the grandparents.

The Washington Post quoted neighbors on Ellenwood Drive, just north of Route 50 in Fairfax, describing Dela Rosa as a loving, warm caregiver to her granddaughter, and as an involved member of the community.

She reportedly raised a daughter who graduated from a private Catholic high school and attended George Mason University, and she has a teenage son currently attending private Catholic school.

Dela Rosa and her husband have worked part time as ushers at George Mason University’s Patriot Center in Fairfax.

Barry Geisler, the Patriot Center’s general manager, said Dela Rosa was friendly and engaging.

Russell Jackson lived next door to Dela Rosa and often saw her and the child smiling and having fun.

“She always had her little granddaughter in her arms,” he told The Post. “The baby was always happy. She seemed like she loved that baby...They are good people.”

Jackson said that the Dela Rosas have lived in the house for a number of years and that Dela Rosa is the kind of neighbor who would organize barbecues and bring food around as neighbors shoveled snow this past winter.

About an hour before the incident at Tysons Corner Center, Jackson’s son, Russell Jackson Jr., saw the family get into the car.

Angelyn’s grandfather buckled her into a car seat, and Angelyn left with her mother and her grandparents, he said.

Well-liked

Family friends, part of the tightknit Filipino community in Northern Virginia, said the Dela Rosa and Ogdoc families are well-liked and have been dedicated to the success of their children.

Friends of Angelyn’s mother and father left sympathetic messages on Facebook, with one calling them “the most wonderful parents I know.”

The friends said Angelyn and her parents moved into Angelyn’s paternal grandparents’ home in Falls Church after living with Dela Rosa.

That home is a newly built, two-story white house with a fence and a manicured lawn.

A child’s seat and toys sat on the back porch on Tuesday.

Neighbors said the family slowly built the house over the past year.

Mark Bailey said he would see Angelyn playing in front of the home, adding that she came to his house on Halloween dressed as a princess.

“Beautiful little girl,” Bailey said.

 

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Police said the girl died after she was thrown from this walkway that links a mall to a parking garage in McLean, Virginia.  (AP photo/Luis M. Alvarez)

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