EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — The El Paso Police Department’s Crimes Against Persons Unit reported the arrest of a 19-year-old who is now facing capital murder charges for the death of her 7-month old son.
Police say, Johnette Dukes, 19, reported her 7-month-old child, A’Legend Dukes, missing on May 8.
According to Dukes, she woke up from a nap and her infant was missing.
Upon arrival, officers searched for the child in and around the residence and found him inside a laundry basket underneath piled clothing, a release said.
Officers attempted CPR, however, the infant was later pronounced dead at the hospital.
According to the police affidavit on the case, investigators say there was no evidence to support that the 7-month-old crawled or climbed into the laundry basket himself.
The affidavit states in part: “It is the Affiant’s reasonable belief along with the other investigators that the descendent was intentionally placed in the basket and concealed by the Defendant, by stacking a large amount of clothing and compressing the clothing. The evidence supports the lack of ability the descendent had to act on his own.”
The baby’s uncle and brother-in-law of the mother, Timoteo Elizondo, believes she’s not guilty of playing a role in her baby’s death.
“She’s very innocent. What they say about her is just wrong. I just want to let the people know to give her a chance,” Elizondo said. “She’s a person who’s very loving, very caring. She loved that baby a lot. She loved A’Legend a lot. That was her son, she wouldn’t do that.”
According to medical examiners, the cause of death ruled asphyxia as a factor.
On May 14, Dukes was arrested for capital murder and was booked into the El Paso County Detention Facility, where she is awaiting a bond hearing.
To see the full police affidavit, see below or download here: