The skeletal remains of a child have been identified seven years after the initial discovery of the bones.
New Jersey police have finally solved the case that became known as the "Baby Bones." The case began in 2005, after the discovery of the skeletal remains, but for years the bones could not be identified. Police resolved the case after receiving a tip almost two months ago.
The skeletal remains were identified as 9-year-old Jon-Niece Jones, of Harlem, Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni said Wednesday according to Fox News. Three people have been charged in the case, including her aunt and uncle, who police believe helped to cover up the crime.
Elisha Jones, the girl's mother, who died four months after the incident from natural causes, had allegedly abused the girl for years. Her aunt, Likisha, looked the other way. Police have now concluded that Jon-Niece died at her aunt's Harlem home on Aug. 15, 2002.
"The family members of Jon-Niece Jones turned a blind eye to the constant physical and mental abuse this girl endured for years," Col. Rick Fuentes, superintendent of the New Jersey State Police, said. They investigated the case with the county prosecutor's office, according to the Associated Press. "Because of the hard work by investigators, these three suspects will now have to answer for their alleged unthinkable actions," Fuentes explained.
Police believe that the mother, the girl's uncle James Jones and the aunt's boyfriend, Godfrey Gibson worked together to set the girl's body on fire. They then disposed of the body in Upper Freehold Township.
"Likisha Jones, 39, of Manhattan; James Jones, 35, of Brooklyn; and Gibson, 48, of Manhattan, were charged with hindering apprehension, tampering with evidence and obstruction of justice," according to AP.
All three suspects were arrested on Tuesday according to officials. The case appeared on "America's Most Wanted" in 2009.