3-year-old died from natural causes during Monkey Joe's visit, officials says

MATTHEWS, N.C. — Police said that no foul play was involved after a 3-year-old girl died after being rushed to the hospital from a Matthews play center Saturday afternoon.

The child was at Monkey Joe's when the incident happened around 5 p.m., and was transported to the hospital where she later died.

An aunt identified the girl as Erin Washington.

The medical examiner's office said she died from natural causes.

(Erin Washington)

The Matthews Monkey Joe's was closed Sunday and will reopen Monday.

Two inspectors with the North Carolina Department of Labor's Elevator and Amusement Device Bureau visited the location on Monday. Officials said the inspectors went there to find out what happened and whether it falls under the department's jurisdictional authority.

There was no negligence found, police say.

Monkey Joe's released the following statement:

“We are deeply saddened by the passing of a young child in our facility yesterday. Our thoughts and prayers are with this child’s family and friends during this difficult time.”

Stay with Channel 9 for updates on this story.

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