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Florida Toddler Killed In Drive-By Shooting

Aiden Michael McClendon was just 22 months old.

Originally posted on
Updated on

A 22-month-old boy has died after being caught in a drive-by shooting in Jacksonville, Florida, on Friday night, officials said.

A family friend sent me this picture of Aiden. He was killed in a drive-by shooting last night. @FCN2go

Aiden Michael McClendon was sitting with his mother and grandmother in a car when shots were fired at the vehicle around 6 p.m. ET, Jacksonville Sheriff's Office Chief of Investigations Tom Hackney told reporters late Friday.

The boy, who was the only person hit, was rushed to hospital in a critical condition after being stuck at least three times in the upper body, according to a statement from the sheriff's office.

He died early Saturday.

BREAKING: A 22-month-old child has died this morning after being shot on the Eastside. -- https://t.co/2rGF5vXoHA.

Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams said Saturday at a news conference that the shooting was gang-related and vowed to find the culprit.

"We will find out who is responsible for this and we will bring them to justice," Williams said.

"It doesn't appear that the victim nor any occupants of the car which the victim was in were the intended targets," the sheriff's office added in its statement.

Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry also spoke Saturday, saying of the shooter, "We are resolute and determined to come after you."

Authorities Saturday offered a $20,000 award for information related to the shooting.

A white vehicle was seen fleeing the scene, and officials are asking witnesses to come forward.

“It’s no shock that [gangs] and violence go together,” Hackney told reporters. “The senseless nature of these killings continues to draw the attention of the public.”

David Mack is a reporter and weekend editor for BuzzFeed News in New York.

Contact David Mack at david.mack@buzzfeed.com.

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