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Shakayla Denson, 26, (above in her booking photo) was arrested and charged with first-degree murder. Police said Denson threw her daughter, Je'Hyra Daniels, off a bridge
A four-year-old girl tragically drowned Thursday afternoon after a woman identified as her mother threw the child off a bridge and into a Florida river.
Police in Tampa confirmed the body of Je'Hyrah Daniels was found in the Hillsborough River around 4:30pm. Her 26-year-old mother, Shakayla Denson, has been charged with first-degree murder.
Witnesses told authorities they saw Denson toss the child in the river near West Aileen Street and Rome Avenue shortly before.
Tampa Police Chief Brian Dugan said at the scene witnesses were 'shaken up' when they phoned the department about the horrific incident.
'It's a crazy scene that we are still unraveling many of the pieces,' Dugan said in a statement to WSVN.
Within a half hour, police located Daniels' body approximately 75 feet off shore.
Police in Tampa confirmed the body of Je'Hyrah Daniels was found in the Hillsborough River around 4:30pm on Thursday. A photo from the scene is shown above
Within a half hour, police located Daniels' body approximately 75 feet off shore
She was pronounced dead at St. Joseph’s Hospital.
Denson was taken into custody after she was found walking near the scene. Police said the mother stole a car hours prior in St. Petersburg.
'The mom is in custody, and right now we are sorting through to get answers,' Dugan said.
'That’s why I say we believe it’s her child, but we are trying to piece this whole thing together.'
The horrific homicide mimics a January 2015 case in which John Jonchuck Jr, 25, (left in his mugshot) threw his five-year-old daughter, Phoebe Jonchuck, (right on Facebook) off a bridge in Tampa Bay. Jonchuck's trial is approaching on September 24
The murder mimics that of a January 2015 case, when an unfit father threw his five-year-old daughter 60 feet off a bridge in Tampa Bay.
John Jonchuck Jr, 25, was arrested a half hour after he was seen speeding toward the Dick Misener Bridge and tossing Phoebe Jonchuck to her death.
His trial is still ongoing, and he is set to appear in court next on September 24, according to the Tampa Bay Times.
The state is seeking the death penalty.