7 yr. old boy dies after karate belt strangled him as he climbed backyard tree


PUBLISHED: 12:30 EST, 18 June 2012 UPDATED: 12:35 EST, 18 June 2012


In what appears to be a tragic accident, a seven-year-boy has died after falling from a tree and hanging himself with his karate belt.

Aaris Conway was found hanging in his backyard by his older brother, Aaron, who desperately tried to save him.

The incident happened outside the family’s Lancaster, Los Angeles home on Friday evening in a tree that all the neighbourhood children climb, the boy’s heart-broken mother said. 


Tragic accident: Aaris Conway, 7, was found hanging from a tree by his karate belt after he had gone outside to play on Friday evening

As usual, the sports-mad youngster had run outside to play basketball, Evelyn Briggs, the boy’s mother, said.


About twenty minutes later, hearing no noise from outside, Aaron went to find his brother. 

‘I grabbed him like this….Aaris…Aaris…’: Aaron recalled to KTLA.com,  demonstrating with his arms raised above his head. 

The boys’ mother then rushed outside, managed to get Aaris down and perform CPR but it was too late. 














Devastated: Aaris’s older brother, Aaron and his mother, Evelyn, performed CPR on the  7-year-old but were unable to save him 


Sports mad: The grieving family remembered the happy 7-year-old as a karate fanatic who loved sports and was always outside playing basketball

Recalling her horror to CBS Ms Briggs said: ‘I was screaming. But I realized I have to go grab my baby and so we got him untangled. 

‘He fell and I shook him. I did chest compression, CPR.’

A neighbour called 911 as the boy’s family tried to resuscitate him. 

Ms Briggs had not known that her son had his karate belt with him when he went to play. 

It is not clear exactly how the accident happened but it is believed that the boy’s belt strangled him as he jumped from the tree, his mother said. 


Investigation: Although police are investigating exactly how the little boy died, no foul play is suspected

The devastated family are now waiting for a coroner’s report. 

Describing herself as ‘lost’ and ‘empty’, Ms Briggs hopes that other parents will learn from her tragic loss. 

‘Every minute counts, every second, I just want other parents to be aware,’ she told KTLA. 

Although police are investigating the death, no foul play is suspected. 



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