Inside the Mysterious Death of a Pregnant Fla. Mom Found Next to Her Car with Toddler Son Inside

The body of Alana Sims, who was five months pregnant at the time of her death, was found on the ground outside her SUV, where her 23-month old son was asleep in the back seat Alana Sims
Alana Sims. Photo: gofundme

Authorities in Florida continue to investigate the death of a young pregnant mother whose body was found next to her car with her toddler son inside.

Alana Sims, who was five months pregnant at the time of her death, died as a result of "upper body trauma," according to authorities. Police have also said her death resulted from a "targeted attack," but other details remain scarce.

Her heartbroken family is now hoping for a break in the case as they work to raise funds for Sims' burial.

Here are four important aspects of the case.

Alana Sims Was Found Dead with 'Upper Body Trauma'

Sims, whose age was only described by Tampa police as being in her 20's, suffered "upper body trauma," on Jan. 30, according to investigators.

This means that it is currently unknown who or what caused the injuries that led to her death.

Her Son was Asleep in the Back Seat

The woman's 23-month-old son was asleep in his car seat in the back of her Ford EcoSport SUV when officers arrived around 10 p.m., the department said in a press release.

The little boy, who turns 2 next month, was unharmed and is now being looked after by her family.

"He's among loved ones running around, and he's running around, and he's happy," her mother, Shahlevi Sims, told ABC Action News.

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Police Believe It Was a Targeted Attack

Though the investigation remains ongoing, police do believe that Sim's death resulted from a targeted attack.

"We don't believe it was random and we're following up on a lot of leads right now," interim Police Chief Lee Bercaw said, per the Tampa Bay Times.

Tampa PD spokesperson Crystal Clark told 10 Tampa Bay: "I can tell you, when she was laying on the ground, it appeared she had been deceased for a bit of time."

According to the police press release, homicide detectives have been speaking with neighbors, and it does not appear Sims lived in the neighborhood.

Authorities have yet to name any persons of interest in the case.

Sims Was 'Devoted Mother' Who 'Always Had a Smile on Her Face'

A Sims' family mourns her death, they're also ensuring she is being remembered as more than just a victim of a crime.

"Alana was the best person you could be around. She wasn't around drama," Shahlevi Sims previously told PEOPLE.

"She stayed to herself you know just a real down-to-earth person," Shahlevi said. "She loved being around her nieces, she loved her son and her family."

Sims' sister, Carli Williams, told 10 Tampa Bay that she was extremely close with Sims, who was one of five girls in the family.

"She always had a smile on her face. Was always positive no matter what," Williams said.

A GoFundMe campaign created to help offset the costs of Sims' funeral had raised more than $12,000 as of Feb. 3. She is described in the fundraiser as "a devoted mother who has a son who she loved very much."

"We just want all this to come to a conclusion so we can close that chapter and begin a new chapter," Shahlevi told ABC Action News.

Anyone with information related to this case is urged to call the Tampa Police Department at 813-231-6130 or share a tip through TIP411, accessible through the TampaPD app.

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