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Friday, May 25, 2018
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Lakeland boy, 2, dies after being shot

Polk County Sheriff’s Office detectives are investigating the shooting death of a 2-year-old Lakeland child.

According to detectives, shortly before 8:30 p.m. Monday, the boy, Taj H. Ayesh, was taken to Lakeland Regional Medical Center by parents Hathum R. Ayesh, 36, and Stephanie Sharell Nealy, 29.

The mother said Tai followed her outside to Ayesh’s truck to retrieve a pre-paid card from the vehicle. Nealy told detectives she moved aside a loaded handgun that was in the truck as she searched for the card. She said at one point as she was facing away from the truck, she heard a gunshot and saw the boy fall to the ground.

Tai was rushed into surgery, but he did not survive, detectives said.

Autopsy results have not yet been concluded, detectives said.

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