Florida toddler found dead in an alligator's mouth was put in lake, police say

The father is accused of putting his two-year-old son there.
The father is accused of putting his two-year-old son there. Photo credit: Via CNN

By Amy Simonson of CNN

The missing Florida toddler who was found dead in the mouth of an alligator last week was put in the lake by his father, who is also accused of killing the child's mother, according to St. Petersburg police affidavits.

Thomas Mosley, 21, is facing two counts of first-degree murder, according to the affidavits.

"Due to the extremely serious allegations surrounding these tragic losses, our investigation is currently focused on gathering information about the facts and circumstances of the case, as well as our client's mental state," a spokesperson for Sixth Judicial Circuit Public Defender Sara Mollo said in a statement.

Mosley allegedly "did throw or place" his 2-year-old son, Taylen, into a lake, inflicting "mortal wounds" that caused the child's death, according to one of the affidavits.

Taylen had been reported missing after his mother, 20-year-old Pashun Jeffery, was found dead in her apartment Thursday afternoon with multiple stab wounds, police previously said.

The night before Jeffery was found, Mosley allegedly went to his mother's house with "severe lacerations to both of his hands and arms consistent with injuries caused by slippage during a knife attack" and was admitted to a hospital, according to an affidavit.

On Thursday, Jeffery's family went to check on her and allegedly saw blood on the sidewalk from her apartment, the affidavit said. They found Jeffery inside dead with "apparent cuts and stabs in excess of 100 wounds," according to an affidavit.

"A bloody fingerprint on a cleaning bottle which had been intentionally placed under a bed in the crime scene was identified to (Mosley)," the affidavit said. "A bloody shoe print with a 'Gucci' emblem was located on the bathroom floor where the victim was found," the affidavit continues.

The 2 year old was not at the crime scene and authorities launched a search for the boy.

The following day, an alligator was spotted in Dell Homes Park just miles away from where Jeffery was found dead, with an object in its mouth, police said. Officers fired a single round at the reptile and it dropped the object.

Officers were able to retrieve what they discovered to be Taylen's body, which was intact, according to police. The alligator was euthanized, an affidavit added.

Mosley was booked in the Pinellas County Jail on Friday, according to the website of the sheriff's office. He is scheduled for a bond hearing on April 11.

CNN reached out to the Office of the State Attorney, who did not offer a comment.