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Authorities: Mom stabbed prior to fire that killed daughter

November 22, 2018

MAYFIELD HEIGHTS, Ohio (AP) — Authorities say a woman was stabbed prior to a fire that killed her 8-year-old daughter at their suburban Cleveland home.

The Cuyahoga (ky-uh-HOH’-guh) County Medical Examiner’s Office said Wednesday that 41-year-old Rebecca Pletnewski officially died of “cervical compression with sharp force injuries” at her Mayfield Heights home. The medical examiner’s office says 8-year-old Olivia Schneider died of smoke inhalation at a hospital after she also was pulled from the burning house early Tuesday.

Both deaths have been ruled homicides.

The Division of State Fire Marshal’s Fire and Explosion Investigation Bureau said in a release Wednesday that the fire was intentionally set.

The release says a $5,000 reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the fire.

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