Child dies after being thrown into Hillsborough River; mother charged

Courtesy CNN  WFTS

Courtesy CNN WFTS

A woman accused of drowning her screaming 4-year-old daughter in a Florida river had been cleared this week by sheriff's child abuse investigators.

Multiple witnesses had called police about 30 minutes earlier and had reported seeing a woman throw the girl into the river.

That girl was taken to a local hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

It didn't take long for police to find and apprehend Denson, as authorities say she was walking nearby while the search and rescue operation was underway.

Denson is accused of stealing a car from an auto fix shop, then parking the vehicle on North Rome Avenue, police said.

Denson "waded into the Hillsborough River and tossed the child into the water", police said in the news release, adding that the incident unfolded just north of the Columbus Drive Bridge. She is now at the jail awaiting processing. "It's the craziness of the world we live in at this time". The officer caught up to Jonchuck just as he stopped at the top of the Dick Misener Bridge, pulled Pheobe out, held her close to his chest, walked over to the railing and threw her into Tampa Bay.

She said she didn't see a child, but thought something wasn't right. She told the paper Denson "didn't care" about her daughter. Denson had previously stolen a vehicle, a Nissan Altima, from Jordan Auto Repair in Tampa before parking the vehicle near the spot where the child was found.

The water is said to have reached the level of Denson's shoulders when she let go of Je'Hyrah. She said that by the time she realized what was going on, it was too late. She was discovered approximately 75 feet from the shore.

Police say the girl was approximately 4 years old.

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