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Teen charged with killing toddler back in court

Henry Hayes accused of killing 22-month-old Aiden McClendon

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A teenager charged with murder in the fatal shooting of 22-month-old Aiden McClendon in January man a brief court appearance Wednesday in a Duval County courtroom.

 

Henry Hayes, 17, is being held without bond on charges of first-degree murder, shooting into an occupied vehicle, discharging a firearm from a vehicle and possession of a weapon by a Florida delinquent adult.

 

Hayes pleaded not guilty last month. His attorney asked for a speedy trial, which Florida law specifies would have to happen by Sept. 1.

 

At a quick status hearing Wednesday, Hayes was scheduled back in court June 8.

 

Police say the intended target of the shooting was Aiden's 19-year-old cousin, Reginald Williams, who is in a rival gang. Aiden was sitting in a car with his mother and grandmother in front of their Eastside home on Jan. 29 when he was shot.

 

The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office said the vehicle used in the crime and one gun were recovered. Investigators were able to get an arrest warrant for Hayes based on witness identification and forensic evidence.

 

If convicted on all charges, Hayes could be sentenced to a total of 65 years in prison. He is due back in court on April 26.