Jon-Niece Jones died in 2002, but it wasn’t until 2005 that the 9-year-old’s skull and jawbone were recovered in Upper Freehold.
The Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office (MCPO) charged that a New York trio unlawfully disposed of the child’s body after setting the remains on fire. On Monday, a grand jury agreed there was enough evidence to go to trial, handing up an indictment against Likisha Jones, 39, and Godfrey Gibson, 48, both of Manhattan, and 35-year-old Brooklyn resident James Jones.
The indictment is the result of a 2005 homicide investigation undertaken by the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office and the New Jersey State Police. On March 18, 2005, the skeletal remains of a child were recovered in an area of Clayton Park near County Road 526 after a hunter discovered them, a press release from the MCPO stated. Law enforcement agencies referred to the investigation as the “Baby Bones” case.
Prosecutors say the Harlem girl, born Sept. 5, 1992, suffered years of abuse and neglect at the hands of her mother, Elisha Jones. An investigation conducted by the MCPO and the New Jersey State Police found that Jones died on Aug. 15, 2002 in the apartment of her aunt, Likisha Jones.
Prosecutors say the child’s mother, her uncle, James Jones, and Likisha Jones’ boyfriend, Godfrey Gibson, brought her body to Upper Freehold Township and disposed of the remains after setting them on fire. Elisha Jones died of medical disease in December 2002, the press release stated.
The child’s death is being investigated as a homicide by the New York County District Attorney’s Office.
Likisha Jones, Godfrey Gibson and James Jones were each charged with hindering apprehension of another, tampering with physical evidence, obstructing the administration of justice, and conspiracy.
Bail for Likisha Jones and James Jones was set at $40,000. Gibson’s bail was set at $75,000. All three defendants posted the bond and were released from Monmouth County Correctional Institution.
A trial date has not yet been announced.