Girl believed to be trapped in school rubble after earthquake doesn’t exist, say Mexican authorities 

A 12-year-old girl believed to have been trapped in the wreckage of a school destroyed by Mexico’s 7.1-magnitude earthquake Tuesday does not seem to exist after all. 

“We want to stress, this story about a girl whose name was out in [news casts], we’ve never had any knowledge of this version,” said Naval officer Admiral Ángel Enrique Sarmiento on Thursday, according to BuzzFeed News.  

He has also been quoted as saying, “All of the children are, unfortunately, dead or safe at home.” 

26 PHOTOS
Devastating aftermath of deadly Mexico earthquake
See Gallery
Devastating aftermath of deadly Mexico earthquake
A woman reacts outside a collapsed building after an earthquake in Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Henry Romero
People remove debris outside a collapsed building after an earthquake in Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Henry Romero
TOPSHOT - Rescuers, firefighters, policemen, soldiers and volunteers remove rubble and debris from a flattened building in search of survivors after a powerful quake in Mexico City on September 19, 2017. A devastating quake in Mexico on Tuesday killed more than 100 people, according to official tallies, with a preliminary 30 deaths recorded in the capital where rescue efforts were still going on. / AFP PHOTO / RONALDO SCHEMIDT (Photo credit should read RONALDO SCHEMIDT/AFP/Getty Images)
Debris are pictured at the site of a collapsed building after an earthquake in Mexico City, Mexico September 20, 2017. REUTERS/Henry Romero
People carry debris outside a collapsed building after an earthquake in Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Henry Romero
Rescue workers remove a dead body after searching through rubble in a floodlit search for students at Enrique Rebsamen school in Mexico City, Mexico September 20, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
A volunteer searches for survivors in Mexico City on September 20, 2017 after a strong quake hit central Mexico on the eve. A powerful 7.1 earthquake shook Mexico City on Tuesday, causing panic among the megalopolis' 20 million inhabitants on the 32nd anniversary of a devastating 1985 quake. / AFP PHOTO / Yuri CORTEZ (Photo credit should read YURI CORTEZ/AFP/Getty Images)
Onlookers stand across from a collapsed building after an earthquake hit Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. Picture taken September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Ginnette Riquelme
People react after an earthquake hit Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
ATTENTION EDITORS - VISUAL COVERAGE OF SCENES OF INJURY OR DEATH A injured woman reacts after an earthquake hit Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
A rescue dog searches for people among the rubble of a collapsed building after an earthquake hit Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Claudia Daut
A man reacts near a damaged building after an earthquake hit Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
A woman reacts after an earthquake hit Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
People rescue a man after an earthquake hit Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
An injured woman is being helped after an earthquake hit Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
People are seen next to a damaged car after an earthquake in Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Claudia Daut
Damages are seen after an earthquake hit in Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
Rescuers, firefighters, policemen, soldiers and volunteers search for survivors in Mexico City on September 20, 2017 after a strong quake hit central Mexico on the eve. A powerful 7.1 earthquake shook Mexico City on Tuesday, causing panic among the megalopolis' 20 million inhabitants on the 32nd anniversary of a devastating 1985 quake. / AFP PHOTO / Yuri CORTEZ (Photo credit should read YURI CORTEZ/AFP/Getty Images)
Soldiers rest as the search for survivors continues in Mexico City on September 20, 2017 after a strong quake hit central Mexico on the eve. A powerful 7.1 earthquake shook Mexico City on Tuesday, causing panic among the megalopolis' 20 million inhabitants on the 32nd anniversary of a devastating 1985 quake. / AFP PHOTO / Pedro PARDO (Photo credit should read PEDRO PARDO/AFP/Getty Images)
Supplies are gathered as the search for survivors countinues in Mexico City on September 20, 2017 after a strong quake hit central Mexico on the eve. A powerful 7.1 earthquake shook Mexico City on Tuesday, causing panic among the megalopolis' 20 million inhabitants on the 32nd anniversary of a devastating 1985 quake. / AFP PHOTO / Pedro PARDO (Photo credit should read PEDRO PARDO/AFP/Getty Images)
People react after an earthquake hit Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Claudia Daut
MEXICO CITY, MEXICO - SEPTEMBER 19: A man watches a building knocked down by a magnitude 7.1 earthquake that jolted central Mexico damaging buildings, knocking out power and causing alarm throughout the capital on September 19, 2017 in Mexico City, Mexico. The earthquake comes 32 years after a magnitude-8.0 earthquake hit on September 19, 1985. (Photo by Christian Palma/Getty Images)
A woman prepares coffee in a square after a powerful quake hit Mexico City, late on September 19, 2017. The death toll from a powerful earthquake that rocked Mexico on September 19 has surged to 248 people, the head of the national disaster response agency, Luis Felipe Puente, said on Twitter. / AFP PHOTO / RONALDO SCHEMIDT (Photo credit should read RONALDO SCHEMIDT/AFP/Getty Images)
MEXICO CITY, MEXICO - SEPTEMBER 19: People watch a building knocked down in Viaducto avenue by a magnitude 7.1 earthquake that jolted central Mexico damaging buildings, knocking out power and causing alarm throughout the capital on September 19, 2017 in Mexico City, Mexico. The earthquake comes 32 years after a magnitude-8.0 earthquake hit on September 19, 1985. (Photo by Christian Palma/Getty Images)
MEXICO CITY, MEXICO - SEPTEMBER 19: A man cries after the magnitude 7.1 earthquake that jolted central Mexico damaging buildings, knocking out power and causing alarm throughout the capital on September 19, 2017 in Mexico City, Mexico. The earthquake comes 32 years after a magnitude-8.0 earthquake hit on September 19, 1985. (Photo by Hector Vivas/Getty Images)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

His announcement, along with reports that the Mexico City school has no record of a student named Frida Sofia, has shocked many observers who rooted for her and made her a popular figure on social media. 

As the BBC says, one person tweeted in Spanish, “Frida Sofia…they told her to move a hand, she moved a nation.”

The comment likely refers to media accounts that made it seem like rescuers had made contact with her; for instance, an Associated Press report had stated, “The sight of her wiggling fingers early Wednesday became a symbol for the hope that drove thousands of professionals and volunteers to work frantically…” 

A local TV network, Noticieros Televisa, also broadcast continuously from the scene and showed a rescuer saying, “We continue to do all efforts we can to get to her.” 

While the exact origin of the “Frida Sofia” rumor is still unknown, one of the network’s hosts, Denise Maerker, seemed to place the blame on officials, tweeting in Spanish, “Authorities gave minute-by-minute updates of all the information about Frida Sofia, and today they say the girl doesn’t exist.” 

According to the BBC, 230 fatalities have been reported so far in the wake of the earthquake. 

11 PHOTOS
Mexico City's Enrique Rebsamen school
See Gallery
Mexico City's Enrique Rebsamen school
Rescue workers search through rubble during a floodlit search for students at Enrique Rebsamen school in Mexico City, Mexico September 20, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
Rescue workers search through rubble during a floodlit search for students at Enrique Rebsamen school in Mexico City, Mexico September 20, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
A rescue worker walks with a sniffer dog during a floodlit search for students at Enrique Rebsamen school in Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. Picture taken on September 19, 2017REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
Rescue workers search through rubble in a floodlit search for students at Enrique Rebsamen school in Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. Picture taken on September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
Rescue workers search through rubble in a floodlit search for students at Enrique Rebsamen school in Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. Picture taken on September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
Rescue workers search through rubble in a floodlit search for students at Enrique Rebsamen school in Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. Picture taken on September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
Rescue workers search through rubble in a floodlit search for students at Enrique Rebsamen school in Mexico City, Mexico September 20, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
Rescue workers search through rubble in a floodlit search for students at Enrique Rebsamen school in Mexico City, Mexico September 19, 2017. Picture taken on September 19, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
A rescue worker searches through rubble in a floodlit search for students at Enrique Rebsamen school in Mexico City, Mexico September 20, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
Rescue workers remove a dead body after searching through rubble in a floodlit search for students at Enrique Rebsamen school in Mexico City, Mexico September 20, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Jasso
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

Read Full Story

Sign up for Breaking News by AOL to get the latest breaking news alerts and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.