5-Year-Old Child Killed At Rodeo Parade

Published: Feb. 22, 2007 at 4:31 PM MST|Updated: Mar. 6, 2007 at 2:37 AM MST
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From the KOLD News 13 Newsroom

A day of festivities turned tragic with the death of a 5-year-old girl at the Tucson Rodeo Parade. Five-year-old Brielle Boisvert was killed when she was knocked from her horse and trampled.

Brielle was riding as a member of Sonoita's Rodeo Royalty. She was "Little Miss Sonoita."

A wagon behind the group was going too fast.  Apparently, something spooked the wagon's horses and both ran into Brielle's horse.  The horse buckled, and the child was tossed off. Brielle was run over by the horses and the wagon behind her.

The accident happened near South Park and West Irvington.  The Tucson Police Department is asking for the public's help in the investigation. Officers are asking for videotape of the incident, especially at the moment when the wagon horses were spooked.  Police say that happened after the horses turned from South Park on to West Irvington.  They are asking that anyone with video call 911.

According to Tucson Rodeo Parade rules, Brielle should not have been riding her horse in the parade. The rules that parade participants are given state that no one under the age of eight may ride a horse in the parade.  However, Rodeo Parade officials admit they do not enforce that rule.   They say, from this point forward, that's one of many things they need to review.

Friends of Brielle say she was an accomplished horsewoman, even at such a young age.  She participated in Junior Rodeo and also performed with her family's band as a singer and fiddle player.

TPD is offering counseling to officers who saw the accident and who responded immediately after it happened.  By late Thursday, friends of Brielle's family had taken her horse home.   It had obvious injuries and, we're told, it will be seen by a veterinarian.

As for the future of the Rodeo Parade, it's up the air.  City leaders are waiting for the police investigation to be completed before a decision is made.