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Missing 2-year-old Florida boy found dead in alligator's mouth, police say

A missing 2-year-old boy — whose mother was found slain in the family's St. Petersburg, Florida, apartment earlier this week — was found dead Friday in the mouth of an alligator. The boy's father has been arrested on suspicion of murder.

Taylen Mosley's body was found in the mouth of an alligator in a recreation area, St. Petersburg Police Chief Anthony Holloway said in a Friday evening news conference.

Detectives had been searching the area around Dell Holmes Park Friday afternoon when they "spotted an alligator with an object in its mouth," Holloway said.

"As the detectives got closer they fired one round to the alligator," Mosley said. "The alligator dropped the object that he had in his mouth and we were able to retrieve Taylen's body intact."

The boy's father, 21-year-old Thomas Mosley, has been charged with two counts of first-degree murder in the deaths of 20-year-old Pashun Jeffery and their son Taylen Mosley, Holloway said.

Taylen's exact cause of death remains unknown, Holloway said, adding that Jeffery was found stabbed multiple times.

Jeffery and her son had last been seen by family members around 5:20 p.m. Wednesday. Police say later, around 8:30 p.m., neighbors heard a loud commotion near their apartment but police were not called.

The next day, Jeffery's mother contacted the apartment complex property manager after not hearing from her daughter. That's when they found her dead.

The FBI and Florida Department of Law Enforcement had joined local authorities in the search for Mosley, which included dive teams looking in lakes that dot the area, as well as drones doing a grid search.

Thomas Mosley went to his mother's house about 9 p.m. Wednesday with the cuts on his arms and hands, Holloway said, and then admitted himself to a local hospital.

Family members said Jeffery and Taylen had just moved into the apartment complex about a month ago.

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