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St. Pete mom accused of child abuse for encouraging fight

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Published:   |   Updated: November 5, 2013 at 05:16 PM

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A St. Petersburg mother was arrested on a child abuse charge over the weekend after encouraging her teenage daughter to fight another girl at a local park.

Another child used a cellphone to record Tawanda Sheffield, 31, of 2623 14th Ave. N. in St. Petersburg, urging her daughter to fight, according to St. Petersburg police.

The trouble started on Saturday, the day before the fight at Booker Creek Park. A 10-year-old boy waved a cigarette lighter in 14-year-old Nakerri Newsome’s face, and Newsome chased the boy, said St. Petersburg police spokesman Mike Puetz.

About 2:30 p.m. Sunday, the boy’s sister, 14-year-old Aniya Shazell, confronted Newsome and told her to leave her brother alone, Puetz said. Soon, the two girls were fighting.

Sheffield, who is Newsome’s mother, showed up at the park during the scuffle and encouraged her daughter to fight, according to police.

Shazell suffered a bite mark on the left side of her neck and a minor scratch on her left cheek and lost hair on the back of her head, Puetz said.

The girls are not expected to face charges, according to police.

sthompson@tampatrib.com

(727) 215-6504

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