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Bond set at $1 mil each for Peoria parents accused of killing their 8-year-old son

Because he was under 12 years of age, they are eligible for a life sentence.
Stephanie Jones and Brandon Walker
Stephanie Jones and Brandon Walker(MGN)
Published: Mar. 31, 2022 at 3:03 PM CDT
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PEORIA (Heart of Illinois ABC) - Two people arrested in connection with the death of their 8-year-old child have appeared in Peoria County bonding court.

Brandon Walker and Stephanie Jones are charged with first-degree murder, for failing to provide proper care and medical care leading to malnutrition, therefore, causing 8-year-old Navin Jones’ death.

Because he is under 12 years of age, they are eligible for a life sentence.

According to the probable cause affidavit, Stephanie Jones found Navin in a bathtub upstairs, brought him downstairs and put him in a shower to “warm him up.” She calls 911 and begins CPR with the dispatcher.

All of the officers reported Navin was extremely malnourished - they could see his bones and had sunken in eyes.

When Peoria Police walked through the house, they found a rope on the doors to Navin’s bedroom and closet.

Stephanie Jones claims the rope to the room was to keep him from throwing things - he had behavioral issues like throwing feces.

She claims the room to the closet was to keep him out of the closet, but Peoria Police claim the closet reeked of feces.

The affidavit goes on to say that in early November when Navin’s grandma gave him to his parents, that was the last time someone saw the boy “healthy.”

Walker and Jones say they didn’t have legal guardianship of Navin, prompting no visits to the hospital because they didn’t think they could seek medical help as well as have him and his 12-year-old brother enrolled in school.

They are also blaming DCFS, claiming it was the agency’s fault for not giving them paperwork and telling them what to do.

Bond has been set for both Walker and Jones at $1 million, with 10 percent to apply.

Peoria County Coroner Coroner Jamie Harwood listed the cause of Jones’ death as physical abuse due to neglect.

He said it’s one of the worst cases of neglect he’s seen.

The doctor who did the autopsy reported he was 30 pounds, exceedingly malnourished and had bruises as well.

Neighbors told Heart of Illinois ABC they saw staffers from the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services at the home about two weeks ago.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Leigh at 309-494-8392. Anonymous tips can be sent to the app tip411, or Crime Stoppers at 309-673-9000.

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