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Mother gets 4 ½ years in South Carolina toddler’s death

September 20, 2018

LANCASTER, S.C. (AP) — A South Carolina mother has been sentenced to 4 ½ years in prison after her 2-year-old son shot and killed himself with a gun her boyfriend wasn’t supposed to have because he was a felon.

Toni Gladden cried as she pleaded guilty Wednesday to child neglect and lying to police. She says her 8-year-old daughter misses her younger brother every day.

Prosecutors say Jacarion Gladden found the gun in a Lancaster home in July 2017 and it was small enough to fit in an adult’s palm with no safety.

Media outlets report Toni Gladden told authorities several different stories, including about a drive-by shooting, before the 27-year-old woman admitted it was her teen boyfriend’s gun.

Shazeem Hayes is serving 8 ½ years in prison on weapons and child neglect charges.

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