2-year-old Georgia girl dies after she was shot by pellet gun, sheriff says

A 2-year-old Haralson County girl has died after investigators say she was accidentally shot with a pellet gun Thursday night.

Shortly after 6 p.m., Haralson County Sheriff's Office deputies responded to reports of a possible cardiac arrest on Poseyville Road. When deputies met the caller near Corinth Posey Road and Business 27, they were told the 2-year-old victim had been shot by a BB gun.

Medics rushed the girl, identified as Jaylea Hutchinson, to Tanner Medical Center at Higgins where she later died from her injuries.

The victim’s aunt says the family is devastated by her death.

"We just want her back," Holly Ray said. "She would light up your life. Your life with her little life."

The Haralson County Sheriff's Office says Jaylea died after being shot by a family member with a pellet rifle at home on Poseyville Road.

Ray says she tried to do CPR as they rushed the child to the hospital.

"Never thought that I would have to do it on anyone, especially my niece," she said.

Investigators say first responders met them on the way to the hospital and continued life-saving efforts, but Jaylea did not make it.

"At this time, we just believe it is a horrible, tragic accident," said Sgt. Heather Mecillas with the Haralson County Sheriff’s Office.

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Jaylea Hutchinson, 2, was killed in a tragic accident involving a pellet gun in Haralson County on March 2, 2023. (Family photo)

Jaylea's death comes about three years after her father suddenly passed away. This latest loss is hard not only for Ray but for Jaylea's mother too.

"For the two short years that we did have her, it was the best two years of our lives," Ray said. "Even though we were grieving the loss of her own dad that she never even got to meet."

Ray says they have memories of Jaylea who loved makeup, unicorns, and the movie Frozen.

The family hopes her death serves as a warning to others.

"We want people to know that even BB guns, pellet guns, are just as dangerous as real guns," Ray said.

Jaylea would have been 3 years old next month. The family says they plan to have a mermaid-themed birthday party to honor her.

Investigators say at this point no charges have been filed.