8-year-old critical after being pulled from canal behind elementary school

- An 8-year-old boy is in critical condition Tuesday night after investigators say he fell into a canal behind an elementary school in Orange County.

It happened in a canal behind Riverside Elementary School, near Pembrook Drive and Forest City Road.

Deputies arrived on the scene and determined that the victim, his brother and possibly another boy were walking home from Riverside Elementary School and scaled a fence into the canal area.

Deputies say that the victim was attempting to cross the canal on a concrete walkway next to a pipe that spans the canal.

Details are still unclear as to what happened next, but somehow the victim fell approximately 10 feet into the water, deputies say.

We're told the brother of the victim yelled to another passing minor who scaled the fence and pulled the victim to the bank of the canal, where Orange County Fire Rescue officials found him and rushed him to the hospital.

Orange County Public Schools released this statement:

"Orange County Public Schools is saddened by the news of a Riverside Elementary School student who fell in a canal on his way home from school today (Tuesday). The district will provide crisis counselors at the school tomorrow and as long as they are needed. Our heart goes out to the family and the school community after this tragic accident."

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