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Florida Mother Killed In Street While Her Young Son Slept In Her Car
The woman whose body was found lying in the street of a Tampa subdivision was identified by reporters as Alana Sims, who was five months pregnant.
Authorities are searching for whomever is responsible for killing a Florida mother as her son was sleeping in a car next to where her body was found.
It happened along Pictorial Park Drive, in the East Park subdivision of New Tampa, around 10:00 p.m. on Monday, according to the Tampa Police. Someone walking in the area discovered the woman and called police, according to Tampa ABC station WFTS. Responding officers found the woman in her 20s dead on the street next to her vehicle with upper body trauma. Her toddler son was asleep in a car seat in the backseat.
Tampa police did not provide the name of the victim to Oxygen.com under Marsy’s Law, which protects crime victims' identities. But the woman was identified by Tampa CBS station WTSP as Alana Sims, a 22-year-old single mother who was five months pregnant at the time of her death.
Police said the woman did not appear to live in the neighborhood in which she was found, and her family told WTSP that area is also unfamiliar to the family.
“We don’t really know why she was in that area,” Carli Williams, the victim’s sister, told WTSP.
Police said the little boy is now being cared for by a relative. Shalevi Sims, the victim's mother, told People the child turns two next month.
“Alana was the best person you could be around,” Shalevi Sims told the magazine. “She wasn’t around drama. She stayed to herself, you know, just a real down-to-earth person. She loved being around her nieces, she loved her son and her family.”
Williams said Sims was one of five girls in the family.
“My closest sibling,” Williams told the station. “That was my best friend. I told her everything. We did everything together. She always had a smile on her face. Was always positive no matter what. Alana, she was like a mother to all of us.”
Crystal Clark, a spokesperson for the Tampa Police Department, told WTSP it appeared Sims had been “deceased for a bit of time.” Police also told the station they believe Sims was targeted, and they believe the suspect could be someone who knew her.
“This is a complete tragedy,” Clark told WFTS. “We have a child who is very young, under the age of two, who’s now going to grow up without a mother because of this incident. The best thing we can do for this family right now is find a way to provide them with some sort of justice — and that requires people to come forward.”
Anyone with any information is asked to call the Tampa Police Department at 813-231-6130, or share a tip through TampaPD app.