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Woman on life support dies after brutal Ohio beating, family says. Boyfriend charged

Kansas City Star
A 21-year-old woman died days after Ohio police say she was beaten and strangled by her boyfriend, her family said.

The brutal Sunday, March 17, assault of Tala Smith left her with brain injuries and bruising throughout her body, her cousin said in a Facebook post. After being placed on life support in a hospital, she died March 23.

Smith’s boyfriend of five years, Andrew Hoskinson, was arrested following the attack in Newark, about a 40-mile drive northeast of Columbus, according to WBNS.

He is charged with attempted murder, domestic violence and strangulation, jail records show. Upgraded charges have not been announced.

Smith was discovered unresponsive in the backseat of a vehicle when Hoskinson drove her to his father’s home, the Newark Advocate reported, citing court documents. Hoskinson told authorities she suffered her injuries when she slipped and hit her head on concrete two times.

But doctors determined Smith’s injuries were not caused by a fall, according to the Newark Advocate. Her injuries included “significant bruising and scratching,” as well as evidence she was strangled.

Family said in a GoFundMe that Smith showed no brain activity since being admitted to the hospital. She was taken off life support after six days, according to the family.

David Tolbert, Smith’s father, said she was “unrecognizable” while in the hospital, WBNS reported.

“Please feel free to share and spread the word for domestic violence victims and survivors to know that this is a very real reality that does not feel real but unfortunately is and it could happen to anyone that you know, even if the signs are not there,” family said in the GoFundMe.

Hoskinson remains in jail as of March 25 on a $1.5 million bond.

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