A 14-year-old girl afflicted with cerebral palsy drowned Friday...

BALTIMORE -- A 14-year-old girl afflicted with cerebral palsy drowned Friday when her wheelchair rolled down an incline outside a Harborplace shopping pavilion and into 15-feet of water.

Police said Dianca Jennings, one of 16 handicapped youths on a tour of Harborplace, apparently rolled off the plaza when a young woman who had been pushing her parked the wheelchair on an incline.


Two teenage boys working at a nearby paddleboat rental dock dove into the water in an unsuccesful attempt to rescue the girl, whose body was recovered 30 minutes later, still strapped in the wheel chair.

The brick plaza edging the Inner Harbor has no guard rails. During the past year, an epileptic boy and several intoxicated people have fallen into the water and drowned near Harborplace, a collection of shops and eateries that is the cornerstone of Baltimore's revitalized downtown.

Officials at Bello Machre Inc., the Glen Burnie nursing home where the girl lived, would not comment on the accident.

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