A woman from Kansas City, Kansas, was sentenced to life in prison for killing her stepson and then feeding his remains to pigs.
Heather Jones, 30, pleaded guilty to first-degree murder and two counts of child abuse against her 7-year-old stepson Adrian Jones in October, KSHB reported. A.J.’s remains had been found in a barn in November 2015 at the Kansas City home she shared with her husband, Michael Jones.
Authorities believed Adrian’s body had been fed to pigs on the property some time after his death, between Sept. 18 and Oct. 4.
The investigation into Adrian’s death found that he had been abused by both Heather and Michael. Michael, 45, was the boy's father.
“He was horribly abused, neglected and ultimately killed,” Chief Deputy District Attorney Sheryl Lidtke said. “I’m sure his suffering was unbearable.”
Lidtke added that Adrian was physically and emotionally abused, confined, and “essentially starved to death.”
Speaking in court, Heather cried as she said she was “deeply sorry.”
“I have to live with this for the rest of my life,” she said, adding that she was in an abusive relationship that still causes her nightmares.
“I didn’t have anyone to call. I didn’t have any family to help me,” Heather said.
Adrian’s maternal grandmother, Judy Conway, believes Heather is still blaming Michael for Adrian’s death.
“How could you do such horrible, horrific things to a child?” Conway wondered of Heather. Conway's daughter was Adrian's mother and had been married to Michael, but was not allowed to see Adrian after Michael was granted custody of the boy and his siblings.
The children were home-schooled and Conway thinks that prevented others, including herself, from seeing the abuse that was happening in the home.
“This could have been prevented,” she said. “If I would have been able to see them, I would have known what was happening.”
Heather will serve life in prison with the possibility of parole after 25 years. She was also sentenced to five years and eight months in prison for two counts of child abuse.
Based on her plea agreement, Heather’s sentences will run consecutively.
Michael’s trial is scheduled for February 2017. He is charged with first-degree murder, one count of child abuse, one count of aggravated battery and one count of aggravated assault with a firearm.
Sources: KSHB, The Kansas City Star / Photo credit: Wyandotte County Sheriff’s Office via The Kansas City Star