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Parachute fails; fall kills woman

A New York woman died Wednesday night when her parachute failed and she landed in a dark wooded area near Skydive DeLand.

Chantal Bonitto, 31, had more than 100 dives under her belt, said DeLand police Lt. Paul Proctor. He said several people witnessed the accident, but gave investigators conflicting accounts of what happened.

It was the first death in more than a year there.

Some witnesses reported that Bonitto's primary parachute did not function and she performed a "cut-away" and detached herself from the parachute. She tried to use a secondary parachute, which apparently also failed, they said.

Proctor said that at least one witness said the primary chute partially opened, while another said it did not open at all.

Proctor said investigators are working to determine the exact cause of the accident.

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