Florida teen arrested after 5-year-old shot in car, police say

Florida sheriff’s deputies arrested a 17-year-old Tuesday evening in connection with a shooting that injured a 5-year-old. 

Jaelin Tito Hope, 17, is charged with aggravated battery, aggravated assault, and firing a missile into a vehicle, all of which are felonies, the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office said. 

Jaelin Tito Hope was arrested later Tuesday evening. 
(Putnam County Sheriff’s Office)

Deputies said Hope got into an argument with the 5-year-old victim’s dad in the town of Interlachen Tuesday evening. The dad told deputies he thought Hope had flagged him down as he was driving and turned his vehicle around. He said he drove up to Hope, an argument ensued, and Hope pulled out a handgun.

The child’s mother and father both said they heard gunshots as they were driving away. The child was injured, and the father drove to State Road 20 and Keuka Road where they were met by emergency personnel. 

FLORIDA TEEN ARRESTED FOR BRINGING GUN TO SCHOOL, THREATENING TO SHOOT STUDENT: POLICE

The child was flown to a Gainesville hospital and had surgery, PCSO said. The child is currently listed in critical but stable condition. An 8-year-old child was also in the car and received “superficial injuries” from the windows shattering, PCSO said. 

Deputies located Hope later that evening and arrested him. He was taken to the Putnam County Jail before being transported to a Department of Juvenile Justice facility. 

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Per Florida public records law, juveniles can be identified when arrested on felony charges, according to the sheriff’s office. 

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