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Parents arrested for child endangerment in Peoria boy’s death

Suspects in child's death
Suspects in child's death(25 News/Heart of Illinois ABC)
Published: Mar. 30, 2022 at 7:21 PM CDT
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PEORIA (Heart of Illinois ABC) - Peoria Police said Wednesday night they’ve arrested a man and a woman suspected of causing a Peoria boy’s death in what the coroner said is one of the worst cases of neglect he’s ever seen.

Brandon Walker, 40, and Stephanie Jones, 35, have been arrested for endangering the life or health of a child that resulted in death.

Police said Walker and Jones were the parents of eight-year old Navin Jones, who was found unresponsive and not breathing when officers were called to the 1700 block of North Gale about 2:40 p.m. Tuesday.

The boy died at OSF St. Francis Medical Center.

Coroner Jamie Harwood listed the cause of Navin’s death as physical abuse due to neglect. He said it’s one of the worst cases of neglect he’s seen.

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.

They said the family moved in about two months ago and the boy was rarely outside playing with other children.

Neighbors said they are heartbroken, but had uneasy feelings about the family.

“I feel sick,” said one neighbor who wishes to remain anonymous.

“I’ve been feeling nauseous since I saw the ambulance out here yesterday, as mothers were protecting our kids from everything out here, and in this case he needed to be protected from his own parents,” the neighbor said.

Walker and Jones are being held in the Peoria County Jail pending a court appearance.

Police said they’re still investigating, and are asking the public for help.

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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