FREEHOLD, N.J. (AP) — Bail has been set for three people accused of covering up the death of an abused New York City girl whose remains were dumped in central New Jersey a decade ago.
Prosecutors say a recent tip enabled authorities to identify the victim as 9-year-old Jon-Niece Jones, of Harlem.
Thirty-nine-year-old Likisha Jones of Manhattan and 35-year-old James Jones of Brooklyn, the child's aunt and uncle, are jailed on $40,000 bail. The third suspect, 48-year-old Godfrey Gibson, who is Likisha Jones' boyfriend, is being held on $75,000 bail.
The investigation came to be known as the "Baby Bones" case after burned, skeletal remains were found in Upper Freehold Township in 2005.
Authorities say the girl died in 2002 after years of abuse by her mother. The mother died of natural causes four months later.
Police in New Jersey have identified a child whose skeletal remains were found in 2005 as a New York City girl who was the victim of years of abuse. They also charged three people, including her aunt and uncle, with covering up her death.
A tip received within the last two months enabled authorities to identify the victim in what came to be known as the "Baby Bones" case as 9-year-old Jon-Niece Jones, of Harlem, Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni said Wednesday.
The investigation found that the girl died at the Harlem home of her aunt, Likisha Jones, on Aug. 15, 2002, following years of abuse by the child's mother, Elisha Jones, the prosecutor said.
Authorities allege the mother, the girl's uncle James Jones and the aunt's boyfriend, Godfrey Gibson, disposed of the body in Upper Freehold Township after setting it on fire. Elisha Jones died four months later of natural causes.
"The family members of Jon-Niece Jones turned a blind eye to the constant physical and mental abuse this girl endured for years," said Col. Rick Fuentes, superintendent of the New Jersey State Police, which investigated the case with the county prosecutor's office. "Because of the hard work by investigators, these three suspects will now have to answer for their alleged unthinkable actions."
Likisha Jones, 39, of Manhattan; James Jones, 35, of Brooklyn; and Gibson, 48, of Manhattan, were charged Tuesday with hindering apprehension, tampering with evidence and obstruction of justice.
Likisha Jones and Gibson were arrested at their home, and James Jones turned himself in at a Harlem police station, the prosecutor said.
They were being held at the county jail in Freehold pending a hearing Wednesday afternoon in Monmouth County Superior Court. Prosecutors didn't know if they had attorneys.
Officials used DNA to identify the remains, including a skull and jawbone, that were discovered by a hunter in tall grass.
The case got attention in 2009 when detectives appeared on the TV show "America's Most Wanted" to seek help in solving the case.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
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2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
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3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
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4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
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5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
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7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
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9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
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10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
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11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
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12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
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13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
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14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
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15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
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16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
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17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
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18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
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19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
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20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
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21. Bae #retailtherapy
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22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
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23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
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24. Diggy Simmons
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25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
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26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
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27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
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28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
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29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
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30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
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31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
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