A child endangerment charge against Jones, 25, 381 Buck Ridge Road, Apartment 16, was dropped in May, due to the ambiguity of the wording in the indictment, to be refiled at a later date.
The second time around, Jones’ indictment has been released charging her with one count of endangering children and one count of involuntary manslaughter in connection with the death of her son, Trenton Jones, on Oct. 4, 2007.
According to count one of her indictment, endangering children, Jones, while being the parent in loco parentis of a child under 18 years old, being 2-year-old Trenton Jones, did recklessly create a substantial risk to the health and safety of the child by violating a duty of care, protection or support. Also, this reckless violation of a duty of care, protection or support resulted in serious physical harm, being the death of Trenton Jones.
The term in loco parentis is Latin for “in the place of a parent” or “instead of a parent” and refers to the legal responsibility of a person or organization to take on some of the functions and responsibilities of a parent, according to Wikipedia.
Count two reads that Jones did cause the death of Trenton Jones, as the proximate result of her committing or attempting to commit a felony, being child endangering as set out in count one of the indictment and incorporated as if fully restated herein.
She entered into a plea agreement with the state following the issuing of the second indictment and agreed to plead guilty to endangering children. In return, count two, involuntary manslaughter, was dismissed by the state and it was recommended that she be sentenced to four years in prison to be served concurrently with another common pleas court case to which she pled guilty last week.
Jones has also pled guilty to one count complicity to robbery in connection with a purse snatching in the parking lot of the Wal-Mart in Gallipolis on March 2 that led to a West Virginia woman being dragged approximately 50 feet. Jones’ co-defendant, Brittani Minnis, was sentenced to four years in prison for attempted robbery last month in this case.
Though both guilty pleas were accepted by the court, the court is under no obligation to accept the plea agreements.
In the meantime, Jones has been released on her own recognizance under a $40,000 bond with an additional bond set at $1,000 ten percent secured.
A pre-sentence investigation is to be conducted by the Adult Probation Department in regards to these cases and Jones is scheduled to face sentencing for both on Oct. 20 at 9:30 a.m.
Gallia County prosecutors were assisted in this case by Special Prosecutions Section Chief Paul L. Scarsella from the Ohio Attorney General’s office because at the time that the offense was committed, Gallia prosecutors were already handling two murder cases and an attempted murder case.